Daily Archives: June 4th, 2009

Quote of the Day: “The Weight of the Gaze”

Feminamist has written powerfully about her experience of the sex industry, particularly in relation to how images of her have been used:

There have certainly been times in my life when I have felt violated by the gaze of others. Or made uncomfortable by the thought that images of my body have been used for sexual purposes. Why? No one was touching me. My body physically remained my own, I wasn’t actually violated, but I still felt abused, sometimes even in cases where I didn’t know at the time that my image was being used. I suspect that just like with physical violation, the tension is about consent and whether you have granted the viewer yours or not.

She also illustrates succinctly how men view the buying of sex/ualised services as buying an object to be used:

I was also thinking about how as a stripper, when I was doing a private dance for a punter, sometimes he would get annoyed if another man watched his show. Like he was being robbed, and I say that trying to hold back ironic laughter. He would often make a remark along the lines of, “I ought to go and get $20 off that guy to cover his share”. Of course I wasn’t being robbed, it was never me out of pocket when some arsehole watched a dance for free and nobody ever offered to go and retrieve some money on my behalf, but why would he? He had bought me and the experience was his, not mine, the body and its display his, not mine, the money his, not mine and the theft of it left him feeling violated.