I think we in the US get that notion confused in our exploitative, mushily erotic society, where every touch is perceived as sexually charged yet suspect–due to, among other influences, homophobia, soap operas, rom-coms, romance novels, porn, puritanism, rape culture, and music videos–that some folks fail to understand the in-between physical contact, which is where quite a bit of partner dancing rests, especially if someone is learning how to dance in a duo for the first time in a studio setting.
Then I started pinpointing where my discomfort rested: though people—including me—sexualized Mr. Gore (on Twitter, at least) either as object of lust or of sexual derision, rarely did I hear anyone say the same either way about Ms. Gore.
Looking at Bitch's archives, I know some people might have known—if not celebrated—National Masturbation Month, which was last month (and every May). But I has this nagging feeling that, as much as we talk about feminism freeing people from oppression's proverbial yokes to explore what turns them on, feminism isn't really discussing probably one of the first sexual acts that some of us have done beyond the basic, "We're doing it! An instant feminist move forward! Yay us!"
But I like to check my reality—especially concerning who "us" and "we" are--so I posed the question to my Facebook and Twitter crews: what do you think is missing in feminist conversations about masturbation?
The men who debased Kat Stacks defined her as a "ho" who had to be "put in her place" by assaulting her into apologizing for her honesty because, according to how society views and treats women who are forthrightly sexual (even when they're honest about getting paid for sex), that's how such women are supposed to be treated. In fact, goes the idea, they deserve such violence. Slut-shaming in extremis.
Yes, I said Samantha from Sex and the City is a Size Queen. But I'd never call Samantha a cougar.
Neither would Kim Cattrall--and she refuses the label for herself. To the point she refused to pose with an actual cougar on a highly popular magazine aimed at women over 40. (Just watch the first 40 seconds. The rest of the interview is standard feature-writing 101, ice-breaker questions.)
I guess I should have seen it crouching in the corners of the workshop. It lurked in a chat I had with another woman about my recent post on Trojan Magnums and its trading on the Big Black Penis stereotype...