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October 6, 2021

Why Feminist Porn is my new Political Power Statement.

Until recently, I had never watched porn.

Not even as a horny teenager. Okay, once, but that’s because my brother accidentally left his CD-ROM (remember those?) in the computer we shared.

These days, I’m in a committed relationship, and one of the beautiful things about it is that, from the beginning, both of us have been intentional in making our sex life a priority.

This is why I regularly look for new ways to get to know my body better or try out new games, toys, or self-pleasure practices.

While there’s a lot to be said about not watching porn, today I want to talk about why I started watching porn. Specifically, porn that isn’t mainstream. More specifically, feminist porn.

The other day, I received a newsletter from a well-known adult cinema webpage. They offered a week-long, free trial, so I decided to give it a shot. For the sake of science, of course.

For the next seven days, I went on to explore their offerings—sometimes with my partner, sometimes by myself.

Some may argue that I don’t have a comparison to non-feminist porn, and that’s true. But that doesn’t mean I can’t tell what I like or that I don’t understand what’s ethical.

While I, of course, can’t speak for all the movies on the platform, here are some of the things that stood out to me as I watched:

>> A realistic display of bodies. The movies showed people of all shapes, forms, sizes, and skin colors, with every kind of body hair or lack thereof. I even found a “mature category,” which showcases people with older bodies.

>> Equal pleasure. Almost all the movies I saw that featured female bodies showed them orgasming. Their pleasure was a priority.

>> The representation of all different kinds of gender identities and a playfulness with gender roles through cross-dressing.

>> Movies with real-life couples who decided to share their intimate moments with others.

>> A representation of story lines that viewers asked for and were then adapted into erotic films by the producer.

>> Erotic movies that spoke on real-life scenarios people may be worried about, like libido issues, body changes due to pregnancy, and sex after cancer treatment.

>> There was a variety of sexual orientations displayed.

>> The scenes were not always explicit, leaving some of the pleasure to my imagination.

>> A long and slow build-up. The storylines often unfolded in an organic way.

Apart from equal pleasure and diversity, this particular site highlights the values they’re dedicated to, such as fair pay, transparency about their team, a safe sexual environment, and high work standards.

I realize that my watching feminist porn isn’t a giant leap for womankind.

However, I do believe that in the capitalist world we’ve created, our purchasing power is exactly that—a power. By making conscious decisions about which products we consume, we decide who and what we support.

Some argue that wearing traditionally feminist items, like earrings in the shape of boobs or tote bags with images of vulvas isn’t making any difference in the real issues we face, like inequality at work and home, gendered violence, issues with bodily autonomy, reproductive choices and femicides, just to name a few. But by looking at the organizations we buy from and what they stand for, and checking if they align with what we think is important to support in this world, we can make a conscious decision.

As Katherine Angel says so well in her book, Tomorrow Sex will Be Good Again:

“Bad sex is a political issue, one of inequality of access to pleasure and self-determination.”

As consumers, we do have a choice to support what we want to be represented in this world. And hopefully, with time, it will become the new norm.

So, to those of us who enjoy watching porn (and even those who are hesitant but curious): let’s make a mindful choice about where we purchase our next adult movie—and our pleasure.

~

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