Details about the 2014 Feminist Porn Awards were just revealed, which got us thinking about our favorite feminist (and non-feminist) pornography. If you haven’t picked up The Feminist Porn Book and checked out Professor Jane Ward‘s Queer Feminist Pig Manifesta (which details how to consume porn ethically and responsibly) Slutist has your back.
A Queer Feminist Pig’s Manifesta:
1. I get off on porn smartly and mindfully. I am interested in my desire. I do not presume it is natural, static, or predictable. I observe its form and shape, not because I want to know how my childhood experiences or social conditioning might have determined it beyond my control, but because I want to know its relationship to my happiness, my suffering, my creativity, and my politics.
2. I do not take my “self” as a viewer too seriously. I do not feel I need to conform to any expectation-on the part of the marketers, my communities,or myself-about what “people like me,” or with my body parts, should desire. I can, with some effort, practice erotic egolessness and/or performativity by exploring the delicious potential of cross-identifications and non-identifications. In sum, I practice the art of spectatorship, identifying and disidentifying with the images made available to me.
3. I am responsible for the impact of my sexual desires and sexual consumerism on others and myself. I will be mindful of where and to whom I direct my gaze, with particular attention to matters of consent and dehumanization.
4. I cultivate a private, internal space where I can honor and observe the complexity of my sexuality as it evolves. Though I remain publicly accountable, I provide myself with moments of exploratory freedom, creative license, and orgasmic surprises. I let my sexuality take me off guard. I move into it, even when it scares me. I trust myself to work productively -queerly and feministly- with my desire.
5. I praise those who aim to dismantle racism and melt heteropatriarchy with their art, their porn. I am bored by normativity. I believe that sexuality breathes life into the revolution. I celebrate queer, antiracist, and feminist images that reflect the diverse reality of sexualities and bodies, and that serve as models for what our bodies can do and be.
We recently got in touch with Professor Ward to ask her about sex, sluts, feminism and porn. Here’s a teaser from our forthcoming interview which reveals the surprising background behind this divine manifesta:
Believe it or not, my inspiration was a Buddhist nun named Pema Chodron. Her teachings have been transformative for me, and self-observation and compassion are central themes in her writing, and in Buddhism in general. Porn is such a loaded and triggering medium for people. Whether they think it is going to end the world or liberate the world, people project a lot of drama onto it. My idea in the essay was to relate more intimately and self-reflectively to porn, which I think is the first step in having an ethical relationship to porn consumption. I wanted to think about it as an opportunity for compassionate self-observation, for leaning in, so to speak, to the embarrassing or freaky or politically incorrect aspects of our erotic interiors. Watching porn is a fairly safe way to notice the shape of our desires, the kinds of scripts and imagery that compel us or trigger us or scare us. Not that what people like in porn is what they like in life, but often this is precisely because engaging porn is a contained and private experience, allowing us to check out sex practices and sexual scenes that we have no interest in participating in in real life.