Feminists and Other Puritans

Every time one reads an article that doesn’t mindlessly parrot “sex trafficking” hysteria or some other aspect of the anti-sex movement, yet isn’t written by a sex worker or ally, one can be sure there will be an obligatory sentence about how it’s “surprising” or “paradoxical” or whatever that anti-sex carceral feminists (to use my

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Eros and Phobos

Camille Paglia once wrote, “You have to accept the fact that part of the sizzle of sex comes from the danger of sex.”  Because of that, second-wave feminists were fighting a losing battle in trying to paint sex as a wholly good, positive, non-scary, sunshine-and-rainbows thing in order to make it palatable to the naïve

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Crippling Thought

The danger of crippling thought, the danger of obstructing the formation of the public mind by specially suppressing…representations is far greater than any real danger…from such representations. –  George Bernard Shaw Today is the first day of Banned Books Week, an occasion which interests me as a librarian, as a sex worker and as a steadfast supporter

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A Day for Whores

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.  –  Mahatma Gandhi Tomorrow is International Whores’ Day, the 39th anniversary of a protest in which… …over 100 French prostitutes occupied the Church of St. Nizier in Lyon.  In a very real sense, today is the birthday of the

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Madonna and Whore

A compassionate prostitute am I.  –  The Goddess Ishtar, from a Sumerian cuneiform text Perhaps the loveliest compliment I ever received was from one of my customers. I honestly don’t recall whether it was before or after the act, but I was lying naked on the bed talking to him, with my hair falling about

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All About the Men

Probably the most common stereotype of anti-sex worker feminists is that they’re all misandrists, and on the surface that certainly seems true.  But a closer examination of the issue reveals a deeper motivation which more closely resembles an obsessive concern with men at the expense of women.  Feminists are willing to deny models income in order

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Available Weapon

Radical feminists are fond of pretending that women are not individuals, but rather mere appendages of some vast gestalt entity for which the feminists are the designated mouthpieces.  Many of their arguments against sex work rely on the notion that the private actions of individual women somehow resonate across this vast, incorporeal, hydra-like entity and

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Comment: Not Good Enough

Modern feminists expend considerable time and energy criticizing societal pressures for women’s bodies to conform to certain sexual norms.  While I reject asinine assertions like “clothes, cosmetics, diets, gym membership, trips to the hair salon, the waxing salon and the nail salon [are indicators of women’s] self-loathing” and mercilessly ridicule those who spend their time

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Honoring Our Dead

I know who held the knife, but they might as well have put it in his hands.  –  the mother of murdered sex worker Petite Jasmine Several days a year sex workers and our allies get together, either in person or in spirit, to observe certain occasions.  On March 3rd, we agitate for our rights and

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Range of Experience

Freedom and whores are the most cosmopolitan items under the sun. – Georg Büchner In order to get around the “consenting adults” argument and negate the obvious symmetry between arguments for abortion rights and those for the right to have sex on one’s own terms, modern prohibitionists often argue that whores are incapable of rational adult

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Shame, Shame

While the internet is the greatest mass-communication innovation since the printing press, it has also created a few social problems that did not previously exist.  Unfortunately, the attempts of Luddites and control freaks to deal with these issues resemble, as do so many other governmental attempts to “do something”, an attempt to break an egg

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Columns: Buttons, Bags & Banknotes

Second-wave feminism in the UK has, like the first wave of the 19th century before it, devolved into a solution in search of a problem.  In many English-speaking countries there are plenty of women’s rights battles to be fought, such as the brutal campaigns against abortion access in the US and a wide variety of

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China Dolls

This past Tuesday, the European Parliament passed a call for continent-wide censorship of sexual content, justified by a view of women more at home in Victorian thought than in the second decade of the 21st century.  Yes, I know you heard that the measure was defeated, but that’s because the Fourth Estate no longer bothers

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Awakening

In the early days of second-wave feminism, sex workers were widely recognized as having fought for women’s rights for centuries; 1970s whores marched and protested right alongside of housewives and lesbians, and for a while it looked like the cause of sex worker rights would become a mainstream one.  But just as it had happened

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Columns: Speech and More Speech

I presume that most Cliterati readers are already well aware of the whole Julie Burchill controversy of last weekend, but for those who were on holiday or forgot to pay their ISP bill, here’s a short synopsis.  Feminist writer Suzanne Moore used an ill-considered metaphor which was perceived as a slur by transgendered people, but

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