Having described myself as a sex-positive feminist in many places, I am often asked what that means. Rather than strain my own overworked brain on describing it, I have found a remarkable resource on the internet that has already done it. According to Wikipedia, the resource of choice for scholars such as myself, the sex positive movement as described by sexologist Carol Queen is as follows:
Sex-positive, a term that’s coming into cultural awareness, isn’t a dippy love-child celebration of orgone – it’s a simple yet radical affirmation that we each grow our own passions on a different medium, that instead of having two or three or even half a dozen sexual orientations, we should be thinking in terms of millions. “Sex-positive” respects each of our unique sexual profiles, even as we acknowledge that some of us have been damaged by a culture that tries to eradicate sexual difference and possibility.
It’s the cultural philosophy that understands sexuality as a potentially positive force in one’s life, and it can, of course, be contrasted with sex-negativity, which sees sex as problematic, disruptive, dangerous. Sex-positivity allows for and in fact celebrates sexual diversity, differing desires and relationships structures, and individual choices based on consent.
Professor Wikipedia then describes how this relates to feminism:
Sex-positive feminism, also known as pro-sex feminism, sex-radical feminism, or sexually liberal feminism, is a movement that began in the early 1980s. Some became involved in the sex-positive feminist movement in response to efforts by anti-pornography feminists, such as Catharine MacKinnon, Andrea Dworkin, Robin Morgan and Dorchen Leidholdt, to put pornography at the center of a feminist explanation of women’s oppression (McElroy, 1995). This period of intense debate and acrimony between sex-positive and anti-pornography feminists during the early 1980s is often referred to as the “Feminist Sex Wars“. Other less academic sex-positive feminists became involved not in opposition to other feminists but in direct response to what they saw as patriarchal control of sexuality. Authors who have advocated sex-positive feminism include Ellen Willis, Susie Bright, Patrick Califia, Gayle Rubin, Carol Queen, Avedon Carol, Tristan Taormino, Diana Cage, and Betty Dodson, who could be regarded as the grandmother of the movement.
And in a show that I can indeed trust this Wikipedia on this particular issue, they end the article with one of my favorite books, The Ethical Slut
The Ethical Slut: A Guide to Infinite Sexual Possibilities is an English language non-fiction narrative written by Dossie Easton and Catherine A. Liszt (a pseudonym of Janet Hardy). It is credited with raising awareness of the possibility of consensual non-monogamy as a lifestyle, and providing practical guidance on how such long-term relationships work and are put into practice.
So, I will finish up this article I have barely written with MY list of favorite sex positive blogs/people/festivals/pets/breakfast cereals.
Heather Corinna – creator of Scarleteen, a sex positive resource for teens (SFW Safe for Work)
Susie Bright – one of the most prolific and one of my personal favorites (SFW)
Tristan Taormino – author, filmmaker, activist, anal sex guru (NSFW NOT Safe for Work)
Betty Dodson – one of the original sex positive leaders (SFW)
Kelly Shibari – BBW porn star and social media guru (NSFW)
aagblog – my mentor in this field, still one of the best blogs around (NSFW)
Tacit – amazing man, just amazing, BDSM, polyamory, skepticism, and transhumanism. And figging. (SFW)
Femina Potens – sex pos feminist art gallery created by Madison Young (NSFW)
Gloria Brame – Sex Positivity and BDSM friendly (NSFW)
Jane Says – sex positive guide to the web (NSFW)
Jiz Lee – genderqueer porn superstar (and personal crush of mine) (NSFW)
MinivanLibertine – pro-sex, feminist, pro-sex, atheist, and also pro-sex (NSFW)
Sarah Sloane – excellent sex educator (SFW)
Shanna Katz – another great sex educator (SFW)
The Beautiful Kind – if you have thought it, she has done it or researched it (NSFW)
Mollena -truly one of a kind woman (SFW)
Emily Nagoski – sex nerd(SFW)
Dirty BlaQ Boi – hot, smart, and southern (NSFW)
Genderfork – a celebration of gender ambiguity (SFW)
Dr. Petra Boyton – one of the best, most comprehensive and open minded science based sex educators out there (SFW)
Annie Sprinkle – sex goddess :) (NSFW)
Carol Queen – activist, author, sex educator, and much much more (SFW)
Feminisnt – controversial, cerebral, and unflinchingly honest, the blog of internet porn star Furry Girl (NSFW)
Sexual Intelligence – Marty Klein, PhD, sex therapist and author, and voice of sanity in a sea of judgieness (SFW)
Cory Silverberg – About Sexuality (SFW)
Charlie Glickman – PhD, Manager of the famous Good Vibrations Store’s Education Programs (SFW)
I feel as if I am forgetting someone, so feel free to add in your own comments about what sex positive blogs you follow!