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    Thursday, August 17, 2006

    Bitch-Time: Feminist Definitions of Desire

    I love Shake's Sis, but I hate threads like this where everyone has to prove their desires are politically correct. Excuse me if I don't believe all of you that say you're only attracted to women who are in the bloom of 2200+-calories-per-day health, never (NEVER) wear makeup, and never even began shaving their legs. It's also good if she has some kind of quirk that would make her unattractive to everyone other than you. And, of course, if these women put on heels, the desire goes right out the window. Even though, naturally, it's really just about her personality anyway.

    I believe that some people are attracted to those women in exclusivity, but I highly doubt it's as common as people (mostly men, because its their desire being policed) on feminist blogs would indicate.

    While I'm leaving myself wide open to hate today, let me just say that I've been known to think conventionally attractive people were attractive. I know, I know: I'm a sinner. I love the guy on the thread that's like, "My girlfriend is naturally thin. She's Japanese. She's hot."

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, sexual desire is interesting in that it can't be magically made to conform to your politics. Some people's desires and politics probably align, but, amongst us way lefties, I'll bet it's few and far between.


    Blogger CrackerLilo said...

    My libido is much more forgiving of male fat and imperfection. You know my taste with celebrities. For men--Tony Stewart, with his body that suggests working hard and eating harder. And Larry the Cable Guy. For women--skinny little Sinead O'Connor. And Gretchen Wilson in her tight jeans. I don't like it about myself. My wife's weight hovers around 95 pounds. It's a good thing for us both, then, that I like thin women, but it's an extremely excellent thing for me that her libido's less picky than mine. I weigh 165.

    I'm glad some people like tits and ass. Some people even like fat. Even features like Details', which purports to "celebrate" curves--and why would a pig in heels be invited to a real celebration?--marginalizes that taste, though. Meanwhile, the vast majority of women feels hopelessly flawed and ugly.

    Because of how our society structures the price and distribution of food, it's easy for poorer women to become fat, too. Meanwhile, it becomes a status thing for rich women to get thin. Remember that horrible expression? "You can never be too rich or too thin?"

    Oh, and I like makeup and nice clothes, too, and respect every minute my wife spends primping. (Jesus, yes, bald women *primp*. Mine certainly does. And I with my long hair and bangs do, too.)

    I guess as that thin hottie Gretchen Wilson sang, "I'm a product of my raising."

    I don't feel like saying a hearty "hell yeah" to that, though.

    7:41 PM  
    Blogger The Goldfish said...

    It frustrates me that some feminists almost want to deny the aesthetic aspects of sexual attraction insteard of trying to reveal it for what it is - which is extremely diverse, for everyone.

    Nobody ought to be made to feel ugly and be humiliated about their appearance. But this sort of thing is surely complying with a sexist society which says that in order to feel all right, a woman must feel beautiful?

    We are not all beautiful, few of us are beautiful in everybody's eyes. However, this is no way to assess one's worth in the world anyhow.

    6:43 AM  
    Blogger Corinne said...

    i sparkly heart you. for writing posts like this, so if you're feeling some hate, remember from me, it's aesthetically pleasing, sparkling hearts.

    9:14 AM  
    Blogger Jean said...

    let me just say that I've been known to think conventionally attractive people were attractive. I know, I know: I'm a sinner.

    Perfect. Thank you.

    11:10 AM  
    Blogger Sly Civilian said...

    "And, of course, if these women put on heels, the desire goes right out the window. Even though, naturally, it's really just about her personality anyway."

    Lmao! I also stayed away from that one...though i think mostly because i was coming late, and it felt like a weird space to be talking about such things. Maybe i'll give it a shot at my place.

    And to repeat, right fucking on with this.

    11:39 AM  
    Blogger EL said...

    Y'all are sweet.

    I understand, Crackerlilo, what you mean. I'm not exulting my attraction to the conventionally beautiful, just admitting it. It seems ridiculous to do either one. It's no better to like the conventionally beautiful, just honest.

    Goldfish, I love what you say here, it makes so much sense. That finding outliers beautiful becomes important rather than valuing people beyond whether or not we're attracted to them.

    And for the rest of you, I love you too!

    12:29 PM  
    Blogger Bitch | Lab said...

    ooooo hooooo. boy.

    i remember the Bad Subjects (an old email discussion list) men getting on a kick about what they thought was attractive. A lot of them being from San Fracisco went on and on about the natural look, no make up, etc.

    Then they when on and on about how unattractive they tought make up, died hair, etc. was.

    What came out of all that, of coruse, was that they associated make up and died hair with women who were not as well educated as the women they preferred -- and well-educated was, ultimately, a stand in for social class.


    but yeah, right on with this post, EL.

    and sly -- looking forward to a post.

    6:32 PM  
    Blogger EL said...

    Bitch, good point. I've had the discussion with men before where they say they don't like women who wear makeup. Come to find out, they don't like women who wear makeup in such a way that indicates that they wear makeup. In other words, they prefer the upper-middle-class "the point of makeup is making yourself look like you're naturally pretty enough not to have to wear any" look, and they didn't like the girls who wore their eyeshadow like they were wearing eyeshadow.

    I'm sure the same would go for the dyed hair. Many an idiot think that pretty upper-class blond is a natural blond because she can afford to get her hair dyed professionally every three weeks.

    10:22 PM  
    Anonymous Luke said...

    this is one topic that i've always been a little hesitant to talk about...partially because it can begin to wander that line of race, color and beauty ideals which thens turns into a mess of having real choice and internalized racism blah. long story short, yea, many of those guys, myself included, I imagine are going to be a little...not as open with what they're revealing. i'm not going to kid myself or try and prop myself up in thinking that what I find attractive is anywhere near in accordance with what i've heard in fem or race theory but i'd be a baldfaced liar if I said I didn't mind or preferred unshaven legs or something.

    and just as well, it's real real easy for men to sit back and take backhanded potshots and basically chastise women who wear makeup, wear heels, "conform to beauty stereotypes" (as well as men who find those women attractive) when im/they're not of the gender where the rest of the world is judging based on participation in those ideals of stereotypical beauty. reminds me of the BJ threads...

    4:57 AM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Good point, Bitch|Lab (and el obviously). Over here, 'done' makeup and 'done' hair can be viewed as quite common and thus off-putting, a more natural (though still polished) is seen as more classy and thus desirable, though those that desired these women were doing the whole "I'm a progessive and feminist male who is only attracted to 'real' women".

    12:35 PM  

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