Culture

50 Shades Of Sexism

50 Shades of Grey, sex, erotic romance
by
May 8th, 2012

A year ago I kept seeing references to a piece of Twilight fan fiction with a BDSM theme. That sounded… interesting, so I decided to check it out for myself. The story turned out to be a modern-day gothic romance — a rich, handsome, but deeply flawed hero with dark secrets is redeemed by the love of a beautiful virgin. But this romance featured a “Red Room of Pain,” riding crops, handcuffs, and lots of kink that Charlotte Bronte would definitely not approve of. It wasn’t the best writing ever, but still an entertaining way to kill a few hours.

So I was fascinated when the author managed to sell her story to a legitimate publisher. Now a trilogy called 50 Shades of Grey, it has become a genuine phenomenon, downloaded to thousands of Kindles and written about in the mainstream press — mostly by people who want to trash the novels and the women who read them. Dr. Drew condemned the book for violence against women; Maureen Dowd wrote a column where she snarked on the “plump” author. The women who read the books are described as desperate, perverse, or not perverse enough (by those who think 50 Shades is BDSM light).

This got to me because, sure, the book is a silly sex fantasy. But can’t women enjoy silly sex fantasies without being beaten up for it? After all, men’s silly sex fantasies are on display in everything from beer commercials to the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, but no one puts them down for enjoying, say, Pamela Anderson in a pillow fight. Women should have the same freedom to indulge their fantasies — no matter how politically incorrect they may be.

Download an erotic romance to your e-reader and enjoy. Guilt-free.

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Our Friends Say
  1. Lis Peery says:

    I loved this post! Totally agree that “silly sex fantasies” for women are still titillating and taboo while romantic comedies, where we get the guy in the end, are okay. Nothing like a little erotica to brighten the day. Anais Nin, anyone?

  2. Crystal says:

    Did you catch Saturday Night Live this past weekend w/Eli Manning? They did a whole skit on 50 Shades…really funny.

  3. McKenna says:

    I agree that when it comes to women’s sexuality on their OWN terms, a lot of people start getting really nervous. The human sexual mind is creative and complex. Anne Rice wrote some similar books that were very popular as well. There are probably some submissive guys out there that would love another series written for them.

  4. Audrey says:

    I totally agree! But why can men be so blatant with their sexual fantasies and women are secretly downloading theirs on our Kindles?

    • Nadine says:

      I’ve run into a lot of women (and I mean A LOT) who bemoan the fact that they have to read it for their “book club.” It appears that “book club” is the new code for “I really want to read it, but need an excuse.”

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