My mother-in-law asked Phil if he was taking me to see Fifty Shades of Grey for Valentine’s Day. There’s not enough UGH in the world for that concept.
“Fifty Shades tells a story of what is really grooming by a stalker – a seasoned perpetrator going after a much younger, more immature woman. She doesn’t know her own body, she doesn’t know what an orgasm is, she doesn’t know what the clitoris is – she’s never had sex. She’s barely articulate. She’s overwhelmed by this wealthy guy. Let me tell you, if this guy was living in a council house on welfare, he would not be so attractive.”
Dr Gail Dines, president of Stop Porn Culture
Although I bristle at someone saying women don’t understand something that is ABOUT them, when Dines says “It speaks to women’s lack of understanding about how violence against them happens,” I have to agree. It is insanely naive to allow yourself to be titillated by a tale of a young (terrifyingly backward) woman being unkindly treated by an older man – it’s brain-washing, not BDSM. This romanticism of controlling relationships is how women grow used to abuse and see even rape as something that ‘just happens’ to them.
“For us, the most concerning bits relate to the controlling behaviour that Christian exhibits outside of the bedroom. He stalks her, he tracks her phone, he finds her workplace, he takes away her independence. Those things are much more concerning in terms of modelling what a healthy, romantic, sexy relationship should be – especially for young girls who will see the movie.”
Natalie Collins, founder of 50 Shades is Abuse
The book is not the problem. The content is not the problem. Similar concepts have been doing the clit-lit rounds for donkey’s years. The problem is the ‘oooh!’ culture that has sprung up around the story – the ABSOLUTE LIE that it is about female empowerment, driven home by constant media endorsement.
Our stupid, stupid society is celebrating something that brings “…male desire to the fore, and a male shaping of what women should want,” in Dines’ words. Just what women, and particularly girls, need: more shit to measure themselves up against. Because if you’re not willing to be tied up and beaten (a mainstream facet of any relationship, or so we must assume), you’re frigid or a lesbian.
It’s the responsibility of grownup women to dismiss the power of this nonsense. Please, you have a brain and you need to use it to save your daughters from a lifetime of feeling like shit.
Listening to the Fifty Shades of Grey audiobook while you’re doing your ironing does not mean you are enlightened or empowered. It means you are enslaved.
Read the VICE article here.