This amateur pornographer, known on the website Deviantart.com as “Pelicanh,” snaps photos of naked ladies, stands back, basks in it, and calls it art. Furthermore, he puts it on the World Wide Web and gets thousands of hits a day. Furthermore, he is eager to demonstrate to his followers his superiority in the field of female genital identification (though he obviously can make no claims in the ellipsis or the ALL CAPS or the insertion-of-too-many-letters-in-the-word-way departments). To wit:
“Anyone taking even a casual stroll through my gallery will see a lot of pussy photos. Let’s just call them what they are, OK? NO….they are NOT photos of “vaginas” – learn your anatomy, people.
I’d LOVE it if there was a sweet and endearing name for them, ya know. “Pussy” sounds pretty “Playboy-ish” to me but it is the best I can do because it ISN’T a vagina photo and that sounds waaaaayyy too medical to me anyway. There are at least a billion names for that part of a woman’s anatomy but that’s not what this journal is about. SO – get over it, I’m gonna call it a pussy.”
Well, sure, you’re a pornographer. This means you think “pussy” is “anatomy.” But even if you didn’t, obviously you’d have to call it “pussy,” since degrading women and telling them to “get over it” is one of the Inalienable Rights of Man.
However, were you not a wart on the corn-hole of Dude Nation, you might know the difference between a pejorative slur and actual nomenclature, or possibly even that vagina is not a “medical” term. It might also dawn on you that a “sweet, endearing name for them” would be useful only to you and your efforts to distract their owners, through some kind of phony sympathetic display, from the fact that you are a dehumanizing, exploitative prick. “That part of a woman’s anatomy” has already got a name, pencil-dick.
Anyway, this Pelican guy, in an essay titled, apparently without irony, “Pussies – Art or Porn!!??”, reveals that his life’s most cherished dream is to release nude models from their self-imposed prison of vulvular self-doubt. See, he has taken a poll on the subject. He is “saddened” to find that nude models invariably aver that they consider to be ugly the body part to which he alludes as “pussy.” Their views on the matter have apparently induced in these models a certain reluctance to flip him the wide open beaver on demand.
Unacceptable! Pelicanh vows magnanimously to take matters into his own hands, to educate these tragically deluded women on the subject of the “beauty” of their “pussies,” presumably for the betterment of all womankind, but in reality so he can persuade more of them to give it up for the camera.
I set myself a small mission to MAKE people look at them, accept them, see the beauty.
Make people look at pussy! What a noble mission! Because men usually experience such difficulty looking at pictures of naked women on the internet. Pelicanh has undoubtedly secured himself a spot on the short list for the Nobel Peace Prize for his dedicated work in this field.
A vulva, according to Pelicanh, can be one of two things:
1. Beautiful art, or
It doesn’t occur to old Pelicanh that a vulva might have aspirations that rise above being photographed by some perv for public display on his perv web page, where viewers are “made” to look at “beauty.” Aspirations, for example, that do not involve complicity in dudely “art” projects, dudely perceptions of “beauty,” or perpetual availability for pornsick voyeurism. A vulva might want to just hang around. Hit the links. Go to a museum. Menstruate. Enjoy a taco. Chillax on the chaise with a marg and a copy of I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew.
The “It’s beautiful so it’s art, not porn” argument always hilarifies me. Haw!
What could it be about a vulva that makes it the universal Holy Grail of a certain species of male shutterbug? Why must these vulgar specimens insist on its unique “beauty” when, in fact, a vulva is precisely as “beautiful” as an elbow or a nostril? Why do they so vociferously declaim that they are not pornographers even though their “work” depends entirely on the gross imbalance of power between dudes and women, specifically on flattening women into 2-dimensional sex graphics?
I’ll tell you. When a dude photographer snags a beaver shot, he snags a trophy. Boo-ya. A photograph of a disembodied vulva is not, as is one of an elbow or a nostril, a politically or socially neutral concept. It is the graphic representation of the universal belief that women = sex, and a symbol of male dominance in a rape culture. And naturally it is customary, in the world of oppressive human endeavor, to imagine that beauty attends that endeavor, so that one may justify the oppression.
In the continuum of pervy sexist tools, dude photographers stand alone at the pinnacle of sleaze.
[Thanks, Windswept. I think.]