Welcome to my Electronic Soapbox
Despite the furore over the book and the movie, I still haven’t read 50SoG. Why not? I hear you ask. You’re a literary snob, yells someone from the back row. Well, yes, a little. You’re a prude, shouts someone from the front row. No way – not me. I just watched the movie Don Jon which deals very graphically with a New Jersey young guy’s addiction to on-line porn !
So why haven’t I? My understanding of the book – and I may well be horribly wrong – is that it is about domination of a young woman by an older man, sexually and psychologically. Wikipedia informed me that 50SoG dealt with : sexual practices involving bondage/discipline,dominance/submission, and sadism/masochism (BDSM). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fifty_Shades_of_Grey
These days the notion of bondage sex, or the whip cracking dominatrix , scarcely raise a ripple. They might raise a lot of other things, but on the whole, they’ve been relegated into the ho-hum category. Anything goes – consenting adult’s right to make choices in regard to their intimate lives etc. etc. All very true. Where are the boundaries? What was once considered as taboo, or scandalous, is now mainstream.
I am baffled why the book has been so popular. Do women really want to be dominated and subdued?
For so many years women across the globe have struggled for political and economic freedom, for the right to education and adequate healthcare. Very recently the young Pakistani teenager, Malala, bravely stood up for her rights, in the face of violence and aggression. She’s been hailed as a heroine. Quite right, too!
Yet here in the West we have the 50SoG phenomenon. Are we so jaded that we look to books/movies like 50SoG in an attempt to find something new? More tittilating? Maybe Western society really is decadent, degenerate, and morally corrupt, as some Asian and Islamic countries judge us to be. Perhaps they have a point.
Finally, and very close to home, I have an elderly woman friend who has been reduced to a nervous wreck – in the literal sense – by her domineering, control-freak husband. Recently she plucked up courage and fled to a safe haven. But she’s non-functional and penniless, after years of psychological abuse. Is this how women should be treated? Of course it isn’t.
And yet FSG is a publishing and movie phenomenal success. What’s the matter with us? Think about it. We’re buying into FSG as entertainment ? Hello? Reality check required here.
And that’s why I won’t read 50 Shades of Grey. You can keep it. Not for me.