|Dirty Naughty Nasty Filthy|
|Written by Paul|
|Thursday, 10 November 2011 04:45|
As a pornographer who is also deeply committed to being sex-positive and inclusive as well as writing hot, hot smut, I find myself frequently running up against a deep dichotomy that informs our social consciousness of sex and porn as both a stigma and a spur - the idea that sex is, or can be, 'dirty'.
I'm sure you know all the words: horny, nasty, filthy, raunchy, slutty, dirty - all of these have been applied to sex for centuries as a way of stigmatizing it, a way of saying "this is not ok", and it is perhaps inevitable that these words, like "faggot" or "queer" have been seized on by the oppressed as badges of pride. Nowadays saying that you have produced some "Nasty, down-and-dirty filth" is a way of saying your porn is awesome. After all, who wants clean, polite, courteous porn?
And therein lies a mind-fuck that it's hard to really think your way around. The idea of sex as dirty has become so ingrained in us that it has become part of the appeal, an essential element of the "thrill". I myself have said that there is little interest, for me, in scenes and acts that do not violate some social or cultural boundary. But today I have to ask - what does that really mean for us as a sex-positive counterculture?
After all, the whole point of being "Sex-Positive" is not just to depict sex and liking sex as good and natural, but to eventually (we hope) realign the mainstream so that we no longer immediately feel that sex and depictions of it are somehow unclean. We want to de-stigmatize sex and things that pertain to sex, to allow erotic choices and expression to be free and unrestricted. We want a society where people can fuck who and how they want without judgment or fear of social/legal repercussions, right?
Only - where does that leave us? If there is nothing taboo, then what about the fun of doing taboo things? Are we really capable of having sex that is hot and horny and incredible if everything is nice and ok and consensual? Can our porn be hot if it is universally accepted? Part of the cool of being a pornographer of any stripe is that it makes you a rebel. You are part of an ancient and sometimes outlaw profession, and when you meet another one like you, they must be at least somewhat cool. Like you, they have chosen to walk a path not really accepted by the culture at large. What happens to that when it is accepted?
What I'm getting at is: are our desires destined to be drawn to the forbidden? Or are our desires for the forbidden precisely because they have been forbidden for so long. Is the act exciting, or the fact that it is taboo? Have we been conditioned by a prudish culture to only lust for what we are not supposed to have, because we are not supposed to have anything? And if so, what would happen if that barrier were removed? What would happen to our sexual culture if anything consensual were routinely permitted?
I think there is a part of the human mind that always lusts for the new, the novel, the forbidden and exciting. I think that there will always be those people who yearn for what they cannot have, no matter what that is. The only question is how far are they willing to go to obtain it? If masturbation is taboo, then that is a fairly easy thrill to indulge. But what if everything consensual were acceptable - as it really should be - would the thrill-seekers have to gravitate towards repellant acts like pedophilia and rape to get their fix?
I think it would be easy, and simplistic, to argue that this would be the case, and thus sound a warning claxon that we have to rein that shit in or risk raising a generation of kiddie-rapists and dog-fuckers, but I think that's idiotic - akin to those who argue that allowing gay marriage will lead to people marrying horses - it's taking a simple idea to a ridiculous extreme.
I think it's idiotic because people are human, and there will always be things that are taboo, even if they are more personal than socially-enforced. There will always be people who can't cope with jealousy, and thus for whom infidelity is forbidden. There will always be places and times where sex is inappropriate, and therefore exciting. There will always be racial/cultural/social divides to cross to satiate hidden desires, imbalances of power to make sex more thrilling and give porn something to commoditize. Thinking otherwise is to misunderstand the nature of our species.
So it's actually okay to be sex-positive and use phrases like "dirty, nasty fucking" because well, we all know what you mean. We can enjoy the frisson of rebelling against how we were raised without perpetuating it. These beliefs are ingrained in us, and are not likely to be changed. What we can hopefully change is the beliefs of future generations, so that their 'dirty' will not be the same as ours, and they can pursue and enjoy more nuanced taboos not as rooted in ancient superstitions and the religious beliefs of primitives. It will be a slow, continuous process, that will make, I hope, for a better society.
Until then, let's all just enjoy being as nasty as we possibly can. It is seriously fucking fun.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 10 November 2011 04:55|