QotD: “sexuality must be subject to systemic criticism like everything else”

“Sex-positive feminism,” as a movement, has as its objective to remove sexuality from the realm of feminist systemic criticism. It is therefore anti-feminist in practice, despite its proponents’ general commitment to feminism. It says that any issue which they deem sexual in nature, be it actual sex, BDSM, pornography or prostitution, must not be analyzed or criticized. Instead, they contend, we should fall back to the “default” position that “consent is the standard of morality.”

Sex-negativity, therefore, means opposition to this stance: that sexuality must be subject to systemic criticism like everything else, and that woman-hating in sexual areas must not be given a free pass. It is nothing more than the consistent application of feminist principles to actual sex, BDSM, consent in sex, pornography and prostitution. It is nothing more than the proposition that sex is affected by patriarchal norms.

Francois Tremblay, full post here

5 responses

  1. I can’t think of anything else I haven’t already said about this, so… thank you. 🙂

  2. Very concisely and eloquently put.

    However, I have issues with the term ‘sex-negativity’. I know it arose in response to the implication behind the term ‘sex-positive feminism’ (i.e., that other feminists were anti-sex), but I just feel it’s fundamentally inaccurate. It’s perfectly legitimate to feel sex-negative in a patriarchal culture, of course, but many people who are also against porn, prostitution and BDSM would feel that the label does not actually describe their position re: sex in general. That said, the term seems to have taken off in response to the hegemony of sex positivity, so I guess I’m glad that that’s happening regardless.

  3. Francois does good work. Why don’t they cut to the chase and call it “women getting fucked-positive feminism?” Because women getting fucked always = good, right? That being what we are presumably for, according to this culture? That and unpaid labor.

  4. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the term ‘sex negative’ itself. Like with ‘sex positive’ it’s a label for a whole set of ideas that may not necessarily reflect the immediate assumptions the label calls forth.

    This blog still has the tag-line “pro-sex, anti-porn”, we made badges (buttons) with it when we did the protests outside the Playboy store on London’s Oxford St back in 2008.

    It was an important point to make, that we were anti-porn, not anti-sex or sexuality, and it was important to say that porn was not sex.

    Personally, I’m not going to say that I’m ‘pro-sex’, because that makes it sound too much like it’s compulsory, I’m sex-neutral – do it if you want, I don’t care either way – or sex-indifferent.

    I’m sex-meh!

  5. Maybe we need to do some reframing and call “sex-positive” “sex-crazed” and “sex-negative” “sex-reasonable.” LOL

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