Sunday, January 18, 2009

In bed on line

Randy sent me a link to Naomi Wolf's thoughts on porn.

She talks about her interviews with college kids and how Internet porn is dragging all the mystery out of sex and the libido out of young men, that women now have to be buff and trimmed and acrobatic in order to compete with the cyberspace lovelies.
Thirty years ago, simple lovemaking was considered erotic in the pornography that entered mainstream consciousness: When Behind the Green Door first opened, clumsy, earnest, missionary-position intercourse was still considered to be a huge turn-on.

Now you have to offer—or flirtatiously suggest—the lesbian scene, the ejaculate-in-the-face scene. Being naked is not enough; you have to be buff, be tan with no tan lines, have the surgically hoisted breasts and the Brazilian bikini wax—just like porn stars.

When a woman coils herself around a man for whom she is burning and whispers, I want you inside of me, with throaty desperation, trimmed or not, hers is the only one in the world to him at that moment. Missionary will likely be the position of choice; and when she cries out as tears squeeze from her eyes, the Internet will never be more irrelevant.

I don't buy Wolf's assertions. So college kids are immature about sex. They always were. And the online porn junkie is the same guy as yesteryear's Hustler fanatic.

If two people have profound desire for one another, it trumps everything and it never goes out of style.

More from me on sex and porn:

What is sexy?

Porn 2.0

The way you move


Dishonorable Schoolboy said...

I don't think it's sex that young people are so immature about, I think it's relationships. Girls don't date anymore, they "hook up". In the past men had to enter into relationships if they wanted to get past second base. These days you go to a club and hit a home run. I don't know if porn has anything to do with this. I just think the world has changed and porn has it's part in that.

Erin O'Brien said...

Thanks for visiting and commenting, DS.

I'm not sure what kids do these days. I am sure I don't want anybody to know what I did when I was a kid in those days.

When I think of my own kid, I try to cultivate her self esteem, instill in her the importance of valuing others and hope for the best.

And you know what? Most kids grow up and do just fine even if there is some bumps in the road.

Hal said...

Naomi Wolf has too much time on her hands. Pornography is, by and large, made by and for straight men (gay men, too, but to a smaller degree).

Men watch porn to get off. Period. They don't care about mystery and all that girlie stuff. The shortest distance between two points is all that matters.

I base this on what I've read about pornography, of course... ;)

Kirk Jusko said...

You get laid a lot in college?

God, yet another reason I should have gone!

Kirk Jusko said...

Sorry if that last comment of mine seemed kind of naive, but I've been reading a lot of right wing literature lately, and according to them, all that happens in college is that you get indoctrinated by socialist college professors. Sex never comes up.

KeesKennis said...

Hi Erin,
I tried to lie about what I did, to no avail, it does not matter, it is dead and in the past.
What you do with your kid NOW is what matters, take that from me.

I have 3, 25, 28 and 30 years old, all flippen female, stars, all of them, I am so proud.

Kirk,I got laid a lot in college and a lot more laying came from the art teachers than those teaching maths.

The lefties tried to 'lay' my brain along certain lines, as well.

The indoctrination by the anti socialist was that my dick had to be long and big enough.

Give or show some proof, dammit.

wallycrawler said...

Is Naomi Wolf still around? She was irrelevant after the "Beauty Myth" wasn't she?

Funny how a beautiful and extremely
brilliant woman like Ms. Wolf has'ta fabricate crap just so women could be taken seriously.

Now after all those years writing about how women should only be judged on merits, Naomi goes under the knife!

She kind'a reminds me of Ann Coulter, as so much that she will write or say anything just to get press.

There's one thing fer sure. Your definitely beautiful, sexy and very smart!

Porn is what it is. A male fantasy.
We can fig're out what's real er not... We look in da mirror!

Timothy O'Regan said...

I enjoyed Naomi Wolf's thoughtful essay and I agree with her conclusions. Some anti-porn rhetoric seems to be fueled by a puritanical fear of the erotic. Refreshingly, Wolf is concerned that the ubiquitous porn industry may be the biggest turn-off of all.

Doug said...

Everyone has a certain "range of possibilities." For my parents, oral sex is outside of that range (they're in their 80s now, but I remember hearing that conversation back when they were in their 50s). My Bible was Xaviera!, so oral sex was definitely in the repertoire, but not so much anal or any of the truly exotic things.

Naomi Wolf may be forgetting all the amateur porn on the net, which, for my time, is far more worthwhile than all that apathetic fake shit. Surely even immature college kids can pick up on the difference between Real and Not Real . . . right?

emmapeelDallas said...

Oh, I like this, and I loved your What is Sexy the first time I read it, and every time I've read it since. You've nailed it.


hoosierboy said...

You are spot on Erin. As a young college boy Isaw Behind the Green Door when it came out. I knew that was not real life sex and it was certainly not making love. Also I never looked at a box of snowy bleach the same.

deangc said...

I agree with you Ms O'Brien.

I don't agree with Wolf on much in anything of hers I've read. I think her problem is that she is unable to separate her own hangups and phobias from her commentary. That is probably true of all of us to certain degree, but few people with Wolf's apparent intelligence allow it so completely.

Zen Wizard said...

The interesting thing about most porn--and for that matter, hookers--is that there is no kissing.

So is kissing the most erotic thing you can do nowadays?

I would argue "yes," because you arguably can't "buy" it.

Anonymous said...

Socialist sex is sexier than capitalist sex.


philbilly said...

"From each according to his ability, to each according to his need"

Sounds gay.

I kid, I kid.

philbilly said...

"He who does not work, neither shall he eat"

Foreplay, yes?

Kirk Jusko said...

OK, Erin, once again I commented on something without first linking to whatever it is you wanted me to link to. However, I've finally got around ro reading what Naomi Campbell wrote. Why doesn't she just write something like, "I can't stand the thought of people having sex outside of marriage, especially when they're under 25, IT JUST DRIVES ME CRAZY!!!" or, "You'll either get pregnant or AIDS or both!" or "It's a sin, you'll burn in Hell!" instead of coming up with "writerly" reasons in favor of abstinance? The point I was trying to make with my earlier jokey comments ("Satire is what closes on Saturday Night"--George S. Kaufman) is that you can't, and shouldn't, genenralize about these things. And I wrote that before I read Wolfe! She's a five-star generalizer! She totally leaves out things like looks. Oh, wait, she does mention that, but in comparison with porn. C'mon! When it comes to physical appearance, living, breathing girls compete with other living breathing girls. So do guys, for that matter. I know all that sounds sexist, but, ask yourself, doesn't that seem closer to reality? What, does some BEAUTIFUL girl walk up to a guy and say, "Oh, Freddy, I'm free Saturday night..." and Freddy replies, "Sorry, Ginger, but I'm planning to stay home and watch that Paris Hilton video" I think not. Of course, if it's a homely girl saying that to a handsome guy (or, just as likely, a homely guy and a beautiful girl) then, yes, he or she might have to compete with porn. OK, now I'm being superficial as well as sexist. I'm totally leaving out PERSONALITY, but so is Wolfe. Of course, Wolfe herself is a looker, and anyone who writes as well as she does (I don't need to agree with someone to think they're a good writer) probably has an interesting personality, as well. So, maybe that's her real problem, she's SPOILED by her looks and personality and can't understand why a more interesting sex life doesn't come along with the package.

As for Socialism vs Capitalism vis-a-vis sex...

I'm willing to bet the Anarchists have the most fun.

Erin O'Brien said...

And Kirk, would anyone disagree that a person you don't find attractive at first blush can bloom beautiful when you really get to know them and vice versa?

Everyone looks like what they are on the inside once you discover what is on the inside.

Kirk Jusko said...

Hmm...I may have just dug a "sensitive male" hole for myself.

Let's say I agree, but just don't go snooping through my sock drawer.

John Ettorre said...

No, it'll never go out of style, nor will people apparently ever stop imagining that this or that younger generation is radically different about base level things than their predecessor generations. Just part of our ignorance of the past, I suppose. Naomi's a hottie, but when it comes to her writing and reasoning, she often leaves something to be desired. Remember the classic consulting she did for Al Gore? Urging him to dress in earth tones and remember his "alpha" male tendencies. Cue the eye-rolling, please...

Anonymous said...

"Now you have to offer—or flirtatiously suggest—the lesbian scene, the ejaculate-in-the-face scene. Being naked is not enough; you have to be buff, be tan with no tan lines, have the surgically hoisted breasts and the Brazilian bikini wax—just like porn stars."

Unfortunately this is now more often than not the case for 20-30 age group. Sex as a meaningful part of a relationship somehow does not enter the consciousness of many, or rather the male 1/2.

I wish had more time/energy to elaborate at the moment because I have a lot of thoughts on this issue. There's a larger blame game than just porn to be played here. That women are objects of desire and that they should strive to be objects of desire is a theme perpetuated from birth these days to both boys and girls, hidden (not so well) in the marketing of products via myriad media channels. It's an insane circle (cycle?).

And then we die.