Is it true?
Are the things we find most abhorrent in life, the things we find sexiest in the bedroom?
I’ve been wanting to write about Karley Sciortino for a few years now, so when I stumbled across her latest column in Breathless for Vogue Magazine, What Do Your Sexual Fantasies Say About You? I couldn’t resist!
Karley Sciortino, aka Slutever, is like a modern Carrie Bradshaw in that she lives in New York and writes a sex column whilst looking like a blonde Dolce & Gabbana model. But that’s pretty much where the similarities end, because Karley is also kinky, bisexual and explorative in a way that would have Carrie blushing and hiding under the sheets! Which is what makes her a fantastic role model for young women, and a perfect subject for this blog! So…
If you don’t already know by now (where have you been?!) I run a website called XConfessions.com, where anonymous people from all across the globe admit their secret fantasies, desires and experiences. Each month I pick two and turn them into artistic, erotic adult cinema! Where did this idea come from? I was tired of a world consumed with mainstream pornography – violent, misogynisitc, and in all honesty, often not a true representation of what I desired. My idea, to crowdsource ideas from anonymous strangers, is my attempt to create cinema that women as well as men really want to watch, and enjoy. Porn for the female gaze – which, as Jill Soloway said, is about including all genders’ desires, as opposed to the “male gaze”, a term coined by Lura Mulvey, where porn or cinema caters exclusively for men.
Often when people encounter my work (without watching it) they assume that “feminist porn” or “women-centric” pornography is exclusively about romantic relationships, gentle kisses and lots of oral sex. But as Karley so succinctly explores, as women our fantasies often reflect the opposite of our attitudes in real life. In the same way male politicians sometimes want to wear a nappy or be urinated on, women who are ardent activists for the empowerment of women in life can enjoy being submissive in the bedroom. Many women enjoy rape fantasies – but this does not mean they want to actually be sexually assaulted.
This is a subject Karley and I have both explored extensively; her through her VICE documentaries on BDSM and kink and fetish, plus her “Slutever” series and website; and myself more specifically through the film Feminist and Submissive, in which a roundtable of smart activist feminists discuss how they aligned their politics with their sexual preferences. Watch the trailer below!
For me, feminism is about choice. Being a modern woman, with much easier avenues to explore our sexualities and fantasies should only be a positive thing. Women of younger and younger generations are learning that what they desire, and how they express their sexuality, is a key part in the process of self-discovery and the road to real happiness. Repressing desire because your fantasy is “weird” or “taboo” or is against your politics can only lead to an unhappy ending. As long as you aren’t hurting anyone (non-consensually) you should be free to be turned on by whatever you want!
In other words, we should give ourselves a break for being idiots about who we want to fuck and why and how. The more we get to the heart of what turns us on, the more evident it becomes that sexual arousal is not often logical, politically correct, or “clean.” – Karley in Breathless
Slutever has also inspired one of my upcoming films! “My Abduction Fantasy” was submitted by a man who watched Karley’s Vice Documentary “The Dangerous Business of BDSM Abduction” which you can see below, plus some sneak peeks behind the scenes of the shoot!
My girlfriend and I watched this video a few nights ago. I don’t think she took it seriously, but I can’t stop thinking about it. I feel like I’m becoming obsessed.