Link Roundup: November 2023

In case you missed it, last month, I wrote an article on the mystery genre in ace fiction.  And the Ace Journal Club read a chapter about intersectionality with race.

Purity culture made me feel trapped.  Finding asexuality set me free. | LGBTQ Nation – As regulars know, I track articles on asexuality for my other blog, but I thought I’d highlight this for the godless audience.  Tyger Songbird describes their story of growing up in Christian purity culture.  At first it seemed to align with their desire to remain single, but it was revealed to be a lie, as he was expected to get married before 25.  Tyger Songbird also wrote several other good articles last month about virgin-shaming, and being sex-repulsed, and Black masculinity.

Evil Lost Media: Dr Phil’s House of Hatred | Big Joel (video, 39 min) – Dr Phil briefly created a disaster of a reality show that brought together people who hated each other.  You know, a white supremacist, a black person who hates white people, etc.  Dr. Phil seems to expect a simple narrative of two sides coming together, but there’s an obvious asymmetry between the oppressors and the oppressed, and it also isn’t long before intersectionality rears its head.  It’s hilarious to watch Phil’s naive centrism beach itself on the shores of reality.

I Don’t Think “Plush” Knows What Furries Are | Keith Ballard (video, 1:04 hours) – A while back I was briefly researching furry history, and there are a couple documentaries out there, but I did not like them.  They were superficial, hagiographical, and ultimately defensive against external prejudice.  (I also hate the visual and musical language of documentaries, which make me think of this.)  I far prefer this video essay, which explains furries using the medium of a review of an obscure comic.

Why Marriage as a Private Contract is a Bad Idea | Tell Me Why the World is Weird – Perfect Number points out one of the problems with turning marriage into a private contract.  It’s likely that conservative religious groups would come up with their own standard contracts which comport with their own beliefs about gender, producing completely inequitable results for women and men.

Zero Punctuation Ends as ‘The Escapist’ Faces Mass Resignations After EIC Firing | Forbes – I know that some people have a poor image of The Escapist because it aligned with Gamergate back in the day, but the outlet really cleaned up under the editor in chief Nick Calandra.  I’ve been a big fan since then.  So I was disappointed to hear that Nick got fired, and then most of the team resigned.  This includes Yahtzee Croshaw, star of Zero Punctuation–a series that he no longer has the rights to.  The former Escapist video team has formed an indie channel Second Wind.

Stop using Fandom | mossbag (video, 22 min) – Fandom (formerly Wikia) is a popular wiki hosting service that buries visitors in ads and exploits the fan communities that use it.  Fan communities seeking to leave Fandom have trouble because Fandom will refuse to remove old wikis, and hogs search engine results.

Silent Treatment | Amia Srinivasan(cn: graphic descriptions of incest/CSA) – A review of Incest Diaries.  The memoir contains a lot of graphic descriptions of sexual violence, and I would never read it; the review itself is difficult enough.  However, it contains some interesting discussion of sexual violence and pleasure.  Reviewers criticized the book for treating the sexual violence practically like porn, describing the author’s pleasure and sexual obsession.  But perhaps that is the point.  Pleasure is an experience that may or may not be present in victims of sexual violence; it’s morally irrelevant.  Even if true, “she wanted it” is an inadequate defense for causing trauma through sexual violence.

Sexual ethics beyond consent | Thing of Things – As long as everything is done consensually between adults, there’s no problem, right?  This is a common perspective among sex-positive folks, and it makes sense.  After all, most of the time when people espouse sexual ethics beyond consent, they’re trying to moralize about BDSM or same-sex activity.  However, this leads us to try to stretch sexual consent to cover all our use cases.  Like when people say cheating is wrong because you didn’t get consent of the partner you cheated on.  I do actually think it’s useful to stretch the concept of consent where we can, but ultimately that’s just one framework that may not be ideal to address every situation.

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