Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Passive Pussy

(warning the following image is not suitable for people under 18, Adult content do not open at work, or around children)

The following is an image from a video that can be found at Fleshbot.  No I wasn't on a porn search when I found it, I was following a link from Don't You Wish Your Girlfriend Was Smart Like MeEven if I was actively seeking porn it would still be cool, so don't even think of judging.  I wanted to post the video but  ran into technical difficulties, so follow the link and watch it. 

passivp What caught my attention was not the gratuitous fucking, but the manner of fucking (yes this is going to be a dirty, dirty post) From the still pic I have posted for those that are to timid to follow the link, it is clear that the male is shall we say "engaged", and the woman is staring blandly at what I can only assume is a television. Talk about an exciting lay.  Throughout the brief video it is clear that he is just giving his 100%, while she passively lays there and "allows" him to fuck her.

I have cursed a lot already but you were warned.  Here is my problem with this video..and no I'm not upset because it is porn, I am upset because it is a perfect example of how we understand sex.  When we think of heterosexual sex it is always something that the man does to the woman.  The male is almost always the active body, and the female the passive body.  Women say I want you to fuck me, or fuck me harder (if the sex is any good at least) and men say I am going to fuck you, or I am going to put my cock inside you. Common phrases that I am sure that we can all agree upon.  Even when the homophobes joke, they create the so-called "feminine" or docile body, as the one on the receiving end of the penis...think pitcher/catcher analogy (btw I am using the example but still deplore it)

Even our pet names for genitalia  are associated with gender specific qualities...Let's do a little experiment. Say the word pussy and now say cock. Immediately pussy conjures up images of softness whereas cock leads the mind to something hard and unyielding.  Since the language that we use to talk about something is a direct indicator of how we understand it, constructing the woman as sexually passive is extremely problematic.  The sexually passive female is a reflection of the ways in which women are socially constructed.  Good women submit, good girls don't really enjoy sex.

Much time is dedicated to slut shaming.  Though we claim to live in a sexually liberated society, in actuality we spend much time disciplining sex, and limiting sexual expression.  A woman who enjoys sex and participates in it liberally with various partners is quickly labelled a whore, or a slut. When you enjoy sex or being sexual, suddenly you have internalized the male gaze and this is partially  because of which body constitutes the active body.

Even something as innocuous as masturbation has become the preserve of males. Men can not only talk about self gratification without any fear of stigmatization, it is expected that they actively participate in it. The same freedom to explore the body is not granted to women. Not only is a pussy passive, it is inherently dirty.  Touching your own is to participate in a cultural taboo that is  recognized as a shameful act. Unfortunately many women adhere to masturbation as the preserve of males and  needlessly deny themselves pleasure. Is it any wonder that so many women have difficulty climaxing? If you don't know what feels good, how can you direct your partner in the best way to please you sexually.  Having a good understanding of your body is the first step towards achieving sexual fulfillment.

Ultimately the passive pussy is limiting to women. We need to begin to rethink the ways in which we understand passive and active as it relates to sexuality. Who says that the woman does not envelop the man, taking her pleasure as she sees fit? We are not only entitled to our orgasms, we have a right to demand them, and act specifically in pursuit of them.  Until we can stop feeling shame about our bodies and appreciate sex for the pleasurable experience that it is capable of being, we will forever sleep in the "wet spot" frustrated and stymied by our own attempts to deny one of the most basic drives of humanity.  Stop waiting for him to fuck you, fuck him instead!


20 comments:

Danny said...

I'm feeling the majority of what you're saying about porn and listening to how women feel when it comes to sex. But:

Even something as innocuous as masturbation has become the preserve of males. Men can not only talk about self gratification without any fear of stigmatization, it is expected that they actively participate in it.

The trick to that is the stigma over male masturbation is the expectation (which has pretty much turned into assumption) that men do it. Just like having sex with another person its just assumed that guys like it, are into it, do it every chance they get, and are thinking about when they aren't actually doing it.

A woman that has an active sex life does get treated to slut shaming but a man that does not have an active sex life is treated to a fair share of shaming as well.

Renee said...

@ Danny A woman that has an active sex life does get treated to slut shaming but a man that does not have an active sex life is treated to a fair share of shaming as well.

Well again this goes back to the point I was making about active vs passive bodies sexually. It is because men are expected to be the sexual aggressor and to "give" women orgasms that this construction exists. Though you may find it limiting I certainly consider it far more advanced to have social pressure to engage in freely in sexual behavior as sex is a natural drive. It is an essential need that men need not deny themselves of due to social pressure.

Danny said...

Though you may find it limiting I certainly consider it far more advanced to have social pressure to engage in freely in sexual behavior as sex is a natural drive. It is an essential need that men need not deny themselves of due to social pressure.

Limiting indeed. Just as women are expected to have no sexual experience men are expected to come with sexual experience. And that creates quite the enigma. If men are supposed be experienced and women are not then where are men getting this experience from? (There is a sad and crude answer for that unfortunately).

If I understand you properly you say that it is better off to be expected to perform a natural act than to be expected not to perform a natural act. I can see where you come from. What comes to mind the expression of emotion. Simply put emotions are natural and while women are expected to express them freely men are expected to hold them in.

Kat said...

This sort of social construction pretty much leaves us queers out in the rain. I'm not dating yet myself, but I notice that homosexual couples will often be asked some variation of "So who's the 'man' in the relationship?" I know what they're trying to say, but the fact that they replace 'dominant partner' with 'man' is telling. That they think it's any of they're business is also problematic.

Renee said...

@Danny I can see where you come from. What comes to mind the expression of emotion. Simply put emotions are natural and while women are expected to express them freely men are expected to hold them in.

Yes and this is one of the ways that sexism hurts men to, though they are not the focus here.

Limiting indeed. Just as women are expected to have no sexual experience men are expected to come with sexual experience

Yes but men are the ones attempting to control female sexuality not the other way around. It is males that are behind the recent attempt to get contraception defined as abortion. Keep in mind that if women are once again subject to their biology the gains of feminism will be undone and that will certainly benefit the patriarchy.

randombabble.com said...

OT, but I love this post. You really "went there", and it was effective.

Roxie said...

I really don't know what to say other than you're right and it's so upsetting and just plain wrong...and Kat, I really can't understand how someone would think that's even their business to even THINK about asking that!

smartlikeme said...

Kat, I think that's a great observation and it just goes to show how stuck we are in a gender binary...and even approach same-sex couples that same way!

Danny said...

Yes and this is one of the ways that sexism hurts men to, though they are not the focus here.
Agreed. The only reason I even said anything was because of the hint of, "this doesn't hurt men in anyway." I was feeling. Sorry for the bit of derailment.

Queers United said...

Great post! I am a feminist male but often wonder about why society labels sexually liberated females "sluts" whereas males who are sexually active are "pimps" and heroic. Why is it that being penetrated is associated with passivity? There are many very dominant women who get penetrated and in the gay world there is the term "aggressive bottom". Pleasure associated with being penetrated anally or vaginally does not necessarily mean the person is submitting to another person.

Zula said...

I have to admit, I actually laughed when I saw that picture because it was so patently absurd - like a picture of someone looking bored while on a roller-coaster. Who in their right mind could find something like that uninteresting?

However, your critique of society's views on femininity/passivity is spot-on, and it definitely bothers me too. Not only does it not take into account same-sex couples, but also kinky heterosexual couples where the man is the submissive/bottom/[term of choice]. (And even then, just because you're "on the bottom" it certainly doesn't mean you're passive!)

natmusk said...

excellent post and I couldn't agree more. I often find this with porns that advertise "fantasies" often times it is the men's fantasy while the wome is the one dancing, getting things rubbed on them or having jugs of milk poured on them (seriously it made me really want a cookie). rarely do you see the men as the object of the women's fantasy. passive vs. active, women act it out while men are the ones that create and demand the fantasy

Jack said...

Why do I feel like I wandered into a scene from some some '70s sitcom.

Danny said...

excellent post and I couldn't agree more. I often find this with porns that advertise "fantasies" often times it is the men's fantasy while the wome is the one dancing, getting things rubbed on them or having jugs of milk poured on them (seriously it made me really want a cookie). rarely do you see the men as the object of the women's fantasy. passive vs. active, women act it out while men are the ones that create and demand the fantasy

So you're saying that the solution would be to show more men as the objects of women's fantasies? I can get with that.

Jack said...

How does a real man know if their girl is enjoying sex? A real man doesn't care! =]

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