Blog Archives

How Sex Is Used To Create Patriarchy

By Brittany Beall 

Sex is used to create male dominance (patriarchy) in a number of ways. Just take a quick look at these:

The double standard

In the double standard when a man has sex with many women that’s fine. Even celebrated. He is seen as a “the ladies man” or labeled “cool.”

But if a woman does the same thing she is labeled as a “slut” and men will find that unattractive.

Men are free, women are not. Men are celebrated, Women are humiliated. Read the rest of this entry

“Yes Means Yes” Is Scary? Rape Is Scary

Consent is sexy

Consent is sexy

“Yes means yes” is the standard for sexual consent on California’s state college campuses.

That’s because “no means no” isn’t good enough.

After all, a woman may not be able to say, “No” because she is frozen with fear. Or she is asleep. Or she’s had too much to drink. Or for a number of other reasons.

Some guys welcome the change, like a 19-year-old English major who told Emily Brazelon at the New York Times, Read the rest of this entry

I Look Sexy, But I Don’t Feel Pleasure

Laci Green explains self objectification.

Laci Green explains self objectification.

I recently talked about “spectatoring” — watching yourself have sex instead of enjoying pleasure.

After surveying my women students I learned that three-quarters spent at least some of their time in bed distracted by how they looked. Most worried that they weren’t “hot” enough. And most also said that their concerns harmed their sexual experience to some degree.

But some women did think they were attractive. In fact, when I surveyed students about the last time they had sex, one young woman replied, “I think I looked pretty good.” Read the rest of this entry

Dominatrix: Worshipped and Objectified 

Paul Giamatti of Showtime’s Billions, all tied up as his dominatrix wife looks down on him.

I recently debated two of my readers, Bob and Fred, about whether women like being dominated in consensual sex. 

After searching my files I found a sample of my students, 83 women and 63 men who are not gay/lesbian (because I wanted a sample of people who have sex cross-sexually). I had wondered what my male students believed about women and what women felt, themselves: Read the rest of this entry

Virgins and Cults and Morals, Oh My!

How does one lose virginity?

By Kyle Welsh

Virginity, or the lack thereof, plays a big role in how we treat women.

From religious practices to traditional lifestyles, high value is placed on women who have never had sex.

In The Cult of Virginity Jessica Valenti talks about the “virginity mystery” – that is, the realization that there is no medical or social definition for what a virgin actually is.  Read the rest of this entry

RoSo’s Story of Sex-Positivity

Editors note: I’m trying to learn why some women are more sex-positive than others. So I asked my students, if they were interested, to tell me stories of their backgrounds. 

So far I have found a few things that distinguish women who experience more sex-negativity and sexual dysfunction. They — and in my youth I would count myself among them — are more likely to:

  • Worry that God will punish them for their sexuality 
  • Have sex-negative parents
  • Have sex-negative friends
  • If they are slut-shamed by their peers they feel deeply “wrong” and shameful
  • They refrain from learning about their sexuality and what works for them

RoSo is a straight 24-year-old woman of East Asian descent. Here is her story: Read the rest of this entry

Were Victorians Repressed or Not?

For years Victorians were called repressed. Now some say they were not.

Were they?

The answer depends:

1) What do you mean by “repression.”

2) Which sex counts as “a Victorian.”  Read the rest of this entry

Sex Object vs Sexy vs Sexual

Many people think that “sexual objectification” and “sexy” and “sexual” are all the same thing.

They’re not.

Here’s a quick primer: Read the rest of this entry

Quiz: Why Does Female Armor Suck?

Female Armor: Not so good at protecting vital organs.

Female Armor: Not so good at protecting vital organs.

Since “Female Armor Sucks” has over 11 million views you may have already seen the video below. But since students keep sending me a link, I give up: I’ll post it.

Along with a quiz:

Why does heroine-armor fail to cover vital organs? Read the rest of this entry

Why Do I Care About The Breast Fetish?

470_2580418I’ve written a series of posts criticizing the breast fetish, not because I’m trying to shame men but because I am concerned with:

  • Women’s self-esteem.
  • Women’s ability to enjoy sexuality. (And if women enjoy it more so do men.)
  • Getting rid of double standards

But I’m not interested in shaming men about the fetish. So what is my point? How would I like to see things change? Read the rest of this entry

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