Nestled in the clutter of Manhattan's late-night television fare is the ultimate in safe sex for the cable-ready: Voyeurvision, the nation's only live call-in tele-fantasy show. Four nights a week, Lynn Muscarella, the show's campy, vampy hostess, slithers over the sheets while encouraging her phone fans to flesh out their sexiest fantasies. Most, not surprisingly, involve her - which delights the Brooklyn-bred Muscarella. She jokes, teases, pouts, writhes - even blushes. "I'm your video game," she coos to a caller. "Tell me what you want."
During the sexual revolution of the 1960s and 1970s and the sex wars of the 1980s and 1990s, the struggle to define sex positivity with respect to sex work served a purpose. To say that not all people have a horrendous experience of the sex industry, and that many sex workers value sexuality and see themselves as complex sexual beings as well as sex educators was an important statement to make, and one that had not been spoken before. However, it is essential to put this statement in historical context. To continue making the statement that many sex workers have a good experience of the sex industry without also including those whose experiences are negative and making space for them to speak up reveals a deep doubt about the validity of the sex positive argument. If we believe in the positive power of sexuality, we must also examine what happens when people’s lives are infused with sex negativity, and we must listen and support people with this experience in sharing their personal truths.
Gracie Passette's insight:
An excellent article by Audacia Ray. A must read, espescially for privileged (aka white cis females).
"In the 1970s, Americans were very much obsessed with sex — either scared out of their wits by the sudden hedonism or thrilled by the increasing disintegration of taboos essentially based on superstition."
Curator comment: this is a brief review suggesting that "Klute" and "American Gigolo" were movies that "not only reflected but may also have helped bring about the cultural shift in America’s views of sexuality".
Source: Life, Death and Fog, observations by the mystery and crime fiction writer Ronald Tierney.
[Gracie loves Klute; hasn't seen American Gigolo ~ yet.]
Courtestans and prostitutes helped mold our society today, and Frichet's book presents women of "ill repute" in a much more positive light, demonstrating that they are far from the fringes of society...
The story of Alice Ivers Tubbs, better known as Poker Alice, one of the best gamblers in the Old West, who was rasied in England, educated in borading schools, outlived three husbands, owned a brothel, and shot a man to death.
What may have begun as the vengeful opportunistic act of a lover scorned (deflowered and left to prostitution) is quickly shown to be more complicated, exposing more than unfinished business but unrequited feelings between the two.
She had been working as an insurance rater and taking night classes at UCLA. She was going to use the money she earned posing for Playboy to finish her degree and then attend graduate school, her goal was to get a PhD and become a teacher. She did finish her bachelor’s degree later in 1966.
Gracie Passette's insight:
Hip-hip-whore-ay for sex work paying for education ~ and whatever else women need.
Hip-hip-whore-ay for books and reading being sexy.
"This a selection from the article in FORTUNE in 1935. Pages 73, 149 and 150 are missing. The detailed industrial information is not unusual for the magazine in the 1930's, but the wealth of accompanying imagery (even at the back of the book) is unusually rich."
Ellen Jewett. Alfred M. Hoffy, H. R. Robinson, 1836. In April of 1836, a young and beautiful New York City prostitute was found murdered in her bed. The daily newspapers made the case a cause célèbre...
A post-medieval burial ground in The Borough, Southwark, south London (what is now Redcross Way), believed to have been established originally as an unconsecrated graveyard for "single women," a euphemism for prostitutes...