"The white fathers told us, "I think, therefore, I am" and the black mother within each of us – the poet – whispers in our dreams, I feel, therefore I can be free."- Audre Lorde

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

For 22-years, I made my world in her womb. There I lived. There I breathed. Sheltered and dreaming, I waited. Waited for the Life that would find me after birth. Afterbirth. A bloody, tangled mess. It pours out of you, and I follow. I flow through you, and into a space that is not my own. I follow because it is time.
It's time, but im not ready. Not ready to breath this air. So thick, it gets caught in my lungs- it steals my cries, replaces words with shallow inhales.

This is not my home.

I am not home.
But they tell me I am.

my Agenda as an Unemployed Post-Grad.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Les and I saw ORGASM Inc. http://orgasminc.org/ tonight, on campus. It's a really great documentary about the medicalization, (and i would argue invention of) "Female Sexual Dysfunction" (FSD) and the role pharmaceutical companies play in defining and marketing "normal" female sexual pleasure. It got me really riled up. The entire film, I sat there writing about 10 different essays in my head, all at once and daydreaming about which of my potential thesis statements I preferred. It made me realize how much I friggin miss school. I miss feeling outraged after a good debate. I miss that pulse of passion that circulates my core, whenever new ideas evolve. I miss the creative energy I could pour into crafting arguments with a punch. I miss my old language-- as I was ranting to les after, words I'd forgotten about started pouring out of me--- my feminist Lexicon. Words like "hegemony" and "foucauldian repression" "commodification" and "methodologically flawed". I miss uncovering corporate conspiracies. Or at least pretending to. and having an enemy. I think I might miss that the most.

Some of my old favorite enemies to pick on were: capitalism, essentialism, sexual repression, "science", and of course, co'optation. This movie happened to touch implicitly on all 5 of my fave foes, so I'm just going to rant about it a little.

Basically the documentary traced the race for pharmaceutical companies to develop a drug to treat alleged (yet mythical) "Female Sexual Dysfunction"-- the inability for "40% (though I'd question that) of women to achieve orgasms". Film-maker Liz Canner uncovers the connection between the medical industry and marketing campaigns that effectively invent, define and capitalize off of the medicalization of female sexuality (or lack thereof).

In other words, let's tell women their "abnormal" so they spend lots of money trying to get "fixed" and be "normal" again. Let's make another billion dollars of profit off of sexist socialization that teaches young girls their "naturally" less-sexual than men, and should fear or be ashamed of their own friggin vagina, and let's milk this for all it's worth. Let's invent an illness, under the guise of "science" and pump out ridiculous "facts" that were gathered through flawed and slanted methodology, and then...let's make it accessible on public broadcasting, so women all around the world can be reminded by celebrities like Oprah, that there's something wrong with them if their not having explosive orgasms after every screw. I know, let's not stop at that. Let's reduce and simplify female sexual pleasure and desire to being merely hormonal and completely negate the complexities of context, culture and socialization. While we're at it, why not completely reconstruct limiting and exclusive concepts of "good natural healthy" desire and sexuality, in order to make even more money off of the fears and sexual anxieties of unsatisfied women everywhere! and then market it with a semi-comical commercials? Or better yet, on Dr. Oz..

What the hell!?!

I love this. First of all because it blatantly points out the role of both capitalism and "science" in socially constructing sexuality. In the Victorian era, in the West, the illness called "female HYSTERIA", was invented--- a diagnosis which thrown on women who were merely irritable or tired, or causing problems. seriously! common'. What was seen at the time as a legit medical female problem--was really a creative way for the "man"-- medicine/science-- to exert control over women, and regulate/police/fix their "way word" expressions of "femininity", in order to reinforce a very limited, passive and socially-constructed regime of woman-hood that would complacently serve and honour the patriarchal society at the time.
Remind you of anything?
Interesting that one of the treatments for this "female hysteria" was "pelvic massage"-- basically the doctors would stimulate the hysterical woman's "genitals" until she had an orgasm, or as the medical industry called it, a "hysterical paraoxysm". Interesting that a simple orgasm could allegedly help "cure" female hysteria (aka irritable woman).
MAYBE THEY WERE IRRITABLE because the only place they could reach orgasm was at the hands of a doctor, since Victorian sexual repression brainwashed women to believe that sex/self-pleasure was morally corrupt, sinful and evil.
Perhaps Female Sexual Dysfunction is the modern-day equivalent to the Victorian Hysteric Woman. Perhaps in the same way that "hysteria" was invented to regulate/control and limit women, so to is too is FSD. The pharmaceutical companies race to find the next female viagra, is a clear example of their power in producing and perpetuating new definitions of "normal". Perhaps instead of a pill to create a blood-flow to the clit, women should be told to go squat over a friggin hand mirror, and figure it out where it even is. (we're not taught to explore, know or love those part of our bodies...and i think this is seriously the leading cause of this alleged diagnosis, NOT hormones) Instead of expecting a pill to increase libido/desire, maybe they should focus on pressuring the school-system to adjust their sexual education programs, to teach females to be empowered sexual agents and give them permission to actually HAVE a damn libido. Maybe we should stop lying to our women about their "natural" sexual passivity--maybe we should stop normalizing men's sexual appetite by giving them uncritical permission to be horny sexual-beings, because of their "nature", while regulating, sensationalizing or stimitizing libidous-women. Maybe we should question the next time we see male-masturbation as a normal, healthy part of coming-of-age, and female masturbation as inappropriate or non-existent. SERIOUSLY. As far as we've come as a "sexed obsessed culture", we're still deeply entrenched in the sex-negative ideals of our history. I believe 100% that the remnants of guilt/shame produced by religion, essentialist-science, abstinence sex-education, body-image-insecurities, high rates of sexual/physical abuse (1 in 6 women) and history, are the the leading reason why "40% of women can't climax regularly", not some invented Sexual Disorder.

The real cure? A cultural shift that teaches our women to love, appreciate, know, explore and celebrate their bodies, especially their vaginas. Without guilt, shame, insecurity or fear. To live and advocate for a more expansive understanding of sexuality-- one that affirms the complexities of desire as relative, flexible and fluid. (not merely hormonal) To shift away from our societal obsession with the coital imperative and instead define and experience intimate pleasure as something that extends beyond orgasm. To love and advocate for a world that seeks to create egalitarian and consensual sexual relationships between women and their partners. (a world that does not use sex as violence/power/or punishment, through rape) For men and women and everyone in between or beyond those categories, to be seen and honoured as equally sexual-creatures.

There. That felt good. It's nice to beable to rant again.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I know
it's you.

snail coitus makes me smile