Z e t e o
Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning

Toward the end of his seminal chapter on the objectification of women in European painting, in Ways of Seeing (1972), John Berger discusses an exception to the rule: Rubens portrait of his second wife, Hélène Fourment: We see her in the act of turning, her fur about to slip off her shoulders. Clearly she will not […]

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Last winter I quoted, inspired by the sexual undertone in Balthus’s paintings of children at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, an article about the negative consequences of equating childhood with innocence. In “Who Are You Kidding? Children, Power, and the Struggle Against Sex Abuse,” Jenny Kitzinger criticizes people’s tendency to describe childhood as an […]

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  A trip down memory lane, we could call this post. On an impulse-buy counter in a French bookstore I see a little yellow book with this title in neon pink letters: Esthéthique de l’éjaculation (the aesthetics of ejaculation). Fifty pages, used copy, on sale for less than four euros, hard to resist (though some might […]

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Since I’ve made my living slinging drinks at a bar for years now, I have found the most interesting ways to slip commentary about gender and sexuality, topics I enjoy discussing, into an evening of martinis and well whiskey. Despite the many taboos associated with these topics, most bar patrons are surprisingly eager to share […]

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Mediated Pornography: Final Reflections (V) You don’t get to read much about Margaret Grebowicz’s personal stand on pornography in her book Why Internet Porn Matters. A committed philosopher herself, Grebowicz prefers to sit at the margins of the discussion and bring different perspectives into conflict. Her last chapter, “Pornography, Norms, and Sex Education,” is perhaps the only […]

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Changing the Culture Around Sex and Alcohol Michael Winerip’s article “Stepping Up to Stop Sexual Assault” was featured in the New York Times Education Life insert on February 9. It should come as no surprise to hear talk of rape and sexual assault on college campuses, as they have been abuzz with such talk for […]

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When Margaret Grebowicz writes about the body, she usually means the female body. The body is the main site where pornography and life happen. It is the private place where we make decisions and plan on asserting who we are. But it is also the public space that limits how others see us. In one […]

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Words matter. My recent readings, including Dylan Farrow’s letter to the New York Times, an article published by The Atlantic, and Margaret Grebowiczs’ book Why Internet Porn Matters, have made me more aware of the ways in which the names we give things redefine our experiences. Dylan Farrow’s letter to the New York Times two weeks ago […]

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In breadth and depth of work, literary quality and intellectual savoir faire, Jan Morris is THE travel writer of the 20th century. She is what the Japanese call a Living Treasure. The World: Life and Travel 1950 – 2000 is a compilation of Morris’s essays about her 50 years of globetrotting, beginning with the conquest of Mt. […]

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Two weeks ago, when I began reading Margaret Grebowicz’s Why Internet Porn Matters I learned that changes in pornography (i.e., an increasing virtual market) reflect and effect the way people think about sexuality, speech and power. Last week, as I dove into chapter 3, I discovered specific ways scholars speak about this topic. For some, pornography is […]

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My friend was a little upset that Margret Grebowicz did not include graphic evidence of her research in her book Why Internet Porn Matters. I, on the other hand, was a little relieved. Reading a book about pornography without the images seemed less daunting than reading an illustrated version of it. Granted, there is descriptive narrative in […]

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Categories: Essay | 1 Comment
RealDoll prosthetic device, leg, being repaired

My friend was a little upset that Margret Grebowicz did not include graphic evidence of her research in her book Why Internet Porn Matters. I, on the other hand, was a little relieved. Reading a book about pornography without the images seemed less daunting than reading an illustrated version of it. Granted, there is descriptive narrative in […]

Essay

February 3, 2018

This is, clearly, a continuing story. In an online article in a new UK magazine, The Amorist, computer science professor Kate Devlin urges that sex bots (and digital assistants, like Siri) shouldn't just be "gynoids"; we should have access to "androids" as well. And then there is my personal experience of drawing from the nude. Increasingly, I find or realize, that breasts now often -- and unfortunately! -- are coming in just one, too-perfect shape. (In the augmentation industry it's called "round," and I believe the most popular fill is on the order of 400ccs.) Are we finding that the simples...

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Categories: Review | 1 Comment
Arabian Red Fox, photograph by Jem Babbington, appears on Birds of Saudi Arabia website

My friend was a little upset that Margret Grebowicz did not include graphic evidence of her research in her book Why Internet Porn Matters. I, on the other hand, was a little relieved. Reading a book about pornography without the images seemed less daunting than reading an illustrated version of it. Granted, there is descriptive narrative in […]

Review

July 25, 2017

[…] Gun. Pour ses explorations des traductions, vers le français, de la poésie, voir, par example, Translating Dickinson, Poetry as Conversation, et Dylan, Nobel, Paris, Chimes Flashing. Some readers may also find of […]

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Categories: Review | 1 Comment
Arabian Red Fox, photograph by Jem Babbington, appears on Birds of Saudi Arabia website

My friend was a little upset that Margret Grebowicz did not include graphic evidence of her research in her book Why Internet Porn Matters. I, on the other hand, was a little relieved. Reading a book about pornography without the images seemed less daunting than reading an illustrated version of it. Granted, there is descriptive narrative in […]

Review

July 25, 2017

[…] Sex, Politics—is due out in 2017. His previous, Emily-Dickinson-related, multilingual writing: Translating Dickinson (into French) and Dickinson — Sex, Spanish, Stew. Some readers might also be interested in Beyond […]

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