Saturday, February 26, 2011

censoring feminist porn down under

Whereas feminist porn maker Erika Lust in Barcelona was invited last year by the ultra-hip international shoe company Camper to shoot a short film using their hotel, Casa Camper, as its setting (the film became available to watch for free online just yesterday at http://www.hotelcasacamper.tv/ together with the short films of five other directors invited to participate in this project; Lust's film, "Room 33" or "Love Hotel," is the third episode when you click to view the movie), feminist porn maker Louise Lush aka feminist porn blogger Ms. Naughty is threatened by Australian censorship on a daily basis.

A former librarian, Ms. Naughty is the biggest producer of online feminist porn with more than a hundred sites for which she's forced to use American servers. Making feminist porn online since 2000, she started shooting her own porn in 2008 with the short film That's What I Like, which won the first Petra Joy Award in Berlin, a competition to support new female porn makers that are creating positive feminist alternatives to mainstream porn.

Last week Ms. Naughty presented a trailer of her new erotic short film Fucking Is The Only Prayer which screens at CineKink in New York on March 4. Check it out:


Fucking Is The Only Prayer - Trailer from Louise Lush on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"lady porn day" is today

Sex journalist and blogger Rabbit Write has announced today Lady Porn Day as a part of her week-long project encouraging women to talk about porn and masturbation to fight lingering taboos and celebrate our sexualities:

 "Girls aren’t encouraged to talk to each other about porn– the same way we aren’t encouraged to talk to each other about masturbation. In girl-world, too often we expect our first orgasm to come from a partner. Then we expect our Sex-and-The-City approved hitachi-orgasms to come from, well, our closed eyes. But porn is just another tool for your sexual growth. And according to statistics more women are watching porn than ever, growing stronger in our silence apparently."

Write has invited other sex bloggers to participate in Lady Porn Day as a "blogosphere wide project," and encourages all women around the world to start thinking and talking about it. I pass on her invitation to you.

Friday, February 18, 2011

"love hotel" soon to come from new porn maker Erika Lust

Feminist porn maker Erika Lust is keeping busy these days, launching all sorts of new projects; films, books, sites, you name it.

She has announced that she will make a sequel to her most recent short film, "Handcuffs," and call it "Love Hotel," scheduled to premiere next week (Feb. 25th) on www.hotelcasacamper.tv. Here's the trailer:


HOTEL Trailer from boolab on Vimeo.

You can find out more about why I'm so impressed by the work of Erika Lust in my book on new porn by women, which I'm currently translating from Norwegian to English, but for now, let me just say this: Not only did Erika become the mom of two when her second daughter was born last fall; she soon thereafter announced the plans for her next upcoming film, Six Female Voices. And while facebooking and blogging away about her new baby girl, Erika has also, amazingly, been able to simply balance on top of all of her other projects, websites, books, films, and everything else that goes into her professional business that she's built from a free downloadable video back in 2006.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

not okay for women to watch porn for pure personal pleasure?

In "Do women enjoy porn?" posted by new porn maker Erika Lust in her blog this week, Lust refers to an interview the Daily Bed Post did recently with women on the street, asking if they enjoy porn. Writes Lust: "Most women say they do watch porn and most of them do to have a laugh or to spice up the sex with their partner. My reaction to this is thinking that although porn is not really a taboo word anymore, the main motivation behind it is still not the one I would like it to be, which is: pure personal pleasure."

I think Lust has an interesting point here, which reminds me of the one the young female contributors to the Rosa Prosa (Pink Prose) anthology, which came out in Norway in 2006 with the subtitle “om jenter og k├ąthet” (about girls and horniness), were trying to make. What these women were arguing was that though women today may be more “sexually liberated” than ever before, there is still a big taboo surrounding HORNY women. Women should have sex lest they be judged prudes (but not too much; then they risk the hooker label). But to talk about feeling horny, to be frank about really WANTING sex, that somehow risks being a bit too much, as if there's something too crude, animalistic, and uncontained about female horniness. 

I agree with Lust that women should be able to express a desire to watch porn for its pure personal pleasure. But what prevents many women from doing this may just be the kind of porn they're watching. It's very likely not the kind of cinematically esthetic porn that Lust and other new porn makers today are making; it's more likely mainstream porn, perhaps glossy big production, or allegedly catering to couples, but nonetheless mainstream. And to enjoy this kind of porn, I think you have to just stand back and laugh at it a bit, because otherwise it's just too overdone, fake, stereotypical, offensive. That's not to say the film won't still arouse you. In the mid nineties, Professor Ellen Laan at the University of Amsterdam conducted a study where she had a group of women watch an episode from one of Candida Royalle's feminist porn films and a scene from a typical mainstream porn film. She found that women responded physically to both, but when interviewed afterwards, the women spoke with disgust about the mainstream porn film while they were more positive to Royalle's film.

Today we're lucky to have more feminist porn makers joining the ranks of Royalle, among them Lust. To check out some of their products, including books and films, visit my Love, Sex, Family Amazon store.   

Monday, February 14, 2011

LOVE, SEX, AND FAMILY!

I am excited to present LOVE, SEX, AND FAMILY, my new online resource center devoted to holistic human sexuality information. The resources I've selected reflect my own values and interests in gender equality, not only the commitment to break free from traditional gender roles and stereotypes about women’s and men's sexuality, but also in creating a new gender democratic discourse for sexuality. All resources are intended to inform and inspire.

Catering to adults who value a positive and healthy sexual life, we've also included resources that can help adults educate children and youth about their own sexuality. Check our LSF Amazon Shop and Shop Good Vibrations® Page for DVDs and books that I've gathered and personally recommend. 

LOVE, SEX, AND FAMILY is currently a work in progress, but it is my hope that the site will grow to be a substantial resource for you all. In the meantime, continue checking quizzical mama and new porn by women where I write more about love, sex, and family.

Happy Valentine's Day,
Anne G. Sabo

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

"v-day" and new porn empowering women

Valentines day is fast approaching, and so is V-Day, which stands for Victory, Valentine, and Vagina. Founded on Valentines day in 1998 by Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues (1994), which is based on Ensler's interviews with more than 200 women, its mission is to end sexual violence and empower women. Every year, from February through April, performances of The Vagina Monologues and other awareness raising events take place around the world.

To counteract sexually discriminating, often violent images of women in porn, Candida Royalle founded Femme Productions in 1984. The first female producer of adult films catering to women, she was also the first adult film maker to have been invited as a member of The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists. Her films are used by therapists for their promotion of positive sexual role modeling and ideas about sex.

Today Royalle is joined by ranks of female porn producers who seek to empower women sexually with their films, and who contribute to V-Day events around the world.

At the official V-Day site you can find information about events around the world. Click here to find those near you. In the Twin Cities, events will be hosted by Augsburg College, Macalester College and University of Minnesota. Here in town, there will be a performance of The Vagina Monologues at Carleton College on February 12; and at St. Olaf College a group of "V-Men" will give a presentation on February 21, providing information on hosting a workshop to engage men in a dialogue about ending violence against women. These workshops will be the foundation for an eventual V-Men script entitled 10 Ways to Be a Man, "a collection of monologues of men's voices, ideas and experiences to end violence against women." The beneficiary for both events in town is the Hope Center, whose mission is "to create zero tolerance for sexual and domestic violence through Healing, Outreach, Prevention and Education."

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