When the mildly kink-themed trilogy 50 Shades of Grey became popular reading in 2012, the media speculated that feminism was in reverse, as the public went mad over bondage and discipline, domination and submission and sadomasochism (BDSM). The novels provoked academic debate about BDSM and the issues it raises for feminists. Is the female dominant truly powerful or is she just another objectified body? Does lesbian BDSM avoid the problematic nature of heterosexual kink, or is it actually more subject to the male gaze of feminist theory? And what is it about kink that has creators of pop culture from Anne Rice to the producers of Scrubs using it to attract audiences? Examining the tropes of kink in books, TV shows, film and the music industry, this work addresses these and other questions that depictions of BDSM raise for the feminist audience. The author interweaves her own research and experiences in the BDSM scene with the subculture's portrayal in the media.
This book is based on blog the author wrote in 2012 for Bitch magazine named "Thinking Kink: A Blog on BDSM, Feminism and Pop Culture." This doesn't only look at how pop culture represent the intersection of BDSM and LGBT community and BDSM and the and non-white community.
This was an interesting read. Do I feel enlightening? No, but I learned some things and had some laughs. The author has a way of conveying information effectlively, but also making it entertaining. I expected a lot more of focus on 50 Shades of Grey (It pains me to put that "book's" title in italics because of how poorly it is written and how wrong it's portrayal of BDSM is. I think of it as being in a genre called "warped and fantastical sexual abuse written to enhance your masturbation experience."). I am happy to report that the author examined it, but didn't get stuck on the subject. When she did mention it, it was referred to as that book or that trilogy, good idea.
I am very pleased that book has an index in the back! *BIG SMILE* I recently have come across so many books that would have been a thousands times better and much easier to navigate with one. It is like people have forgotten about them. I think the lack of including an index is part of what pushes some people to just do an Internet search for information rather than spend hours trying to skim through an entire book for what they are looking for. When I was younger almost all reference and educational books included an index.
Who would I recommend this book to:
Definitely to people who dislike the effect that that trilogy had towards what people believe BDSM realistically is. Also to anyone who is a fan of books, movies, etc. that features BDSM scenes and themes. I know a woman who put herself in a bad situation and justified the abuse she was receiving based on pop culture's version BDSM. For the of you who read my posts about my friend leaving an abusive relationship, you know who I refer to. Some of you I gave more detail to. If any of you are curious and want to now what I am talking about just private message me in Booklikes or Goodreads. Some of the story I am not comfortable posting publicly due to the nature of the situation.
This book was provided in exchange for an HONEST review. I will not, and have refused in the past to promise a "good" review in exchange for a book.