“Lorie Ludtke's comment:
You know I am really tired of people reading a book and deciding it is an example of abuse. Spend some time at a shelter or speak to someone who has been abused. I can tell you in an absolute that is not what this book is about in any way shape or form. Abuse is not a consenting sexual relationship where you have a say in how things go or how far they go. While S&M is about control it's not about an abuse. I suggest you study a little bit harder because it appears your idea on what an abusive relationship is has been sadly misguided. What do we need to be empathetic about when two consenting adults have an exciting sex life. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that a man would spout uninformed garbage about what abuse to a woman is.”
My response to Lorie Ludtke's comment:
Lorie, I’ll respond to your comment, here, because Chapters only allows a limited number of words per review, and I’ll respond civilly. I suggested in my review of Fifty Shades that it was sanitized and cleaned-up. It is. It’s safe, commercial pornography—supermarket checkout-counter safe. It’s legal—it does not cross the threshold of Canadian obscenity laws (as confusing as those laws currently are). It’s like wallpaper or Muzak; we practically breathe this stuff, today. My concern is that the novel is part of a continuum of abuse beginning at the (supposedly) innocuous romance novel level and proceeding up the scale to hard-core, violent and abusive pornography. I think it is easy to dismiss it, as some have, as “mommy porn”. You suggest S&M is not about abuse, instead it's about "control" but let’s ask: who’s really in charge—the billionaire “dom or the 21 year old, university graduate and virgin "sub" Anastasia? (“Dom”, “sub”, so cute; de Sade must be rolling over in his grave!) Let’s ask: who is being excited and at whose expense? I note in one recent Chapter’s review by Michelle Knuttila that “a few husbands” are encouraging their wives to read the books. Female servitude remains the sexiest thing going, it seems. Another reviewer, with the somewhat disturbing name of soulvictim, says “it is just a book”. But, I contend, the stories we tell about each other reflect who we are and influence who we become.
Perhaps if Christian had been balding, overweight and 58 instead of preternaturally handsome and 28 then this dreck might have held my attention a shade or two longer, though I suspect not.
Finally, is “exciting” the only means by which we judge our relationships and the stories we read and write about them? I think there are many dimensions to a relationship and many ways to explore our sexuality within them, ways that are not ‘bound’ to concepts of unequal power and violence—no matter how air-brushed and ‘harm-free’ that violence is portrayed.
Learning the best slipknots to use to hog-tie a woman is one skill I can do without. Duct tape, anyone?