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Feminism

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Feminism is a belief-system based on a purported anti-oppression point of view as applied to the contemporary situation of women and historical abuses faced by women and other minorities. The feminist discourse is particularly concerned with equal rights, and in some cases, outright equality.

Many of the most influential feminists of the 20th century have made supportive statements about minor-older erotic behavior, including Gayle Rubin, Germaine Greer, Kate Millett, Simone de Beauvoir, Shulamith Firestone, Judith Butler, and Andrea Dworkin. Whilst some other sex-positive and/or dissident feminists such as Jane Rule, Camille Paglia, Patrick Califia, Nettie Pollard, Judith Levine, Yasmin Nair, Beatrice Faust, Stevi Jackson, Katharina Rutschky, Heather Corinna, Janice Irvine, Sharon Lamb and Carol Tavris, elaborate contrarian philosophies and anecdotes on the issue of adult-minor sexuality, since the 1970s, the discourse has been increasingly used to condemn such sexual relationships on the basis that inequalities render them universally "abusive".

At present, adjacent movements such as pro-sex work, sex-positive, and anti-carceral feminism are more likely to hold positions that pro-choice MAP and youth rights activists may hold, including the recognition that minors choose and want to engage in sex and sex work, and that prisons and public registration for lawbreakers are ineffective strategies for reducing the incidence of unlawful erotic behavior, especially when law makes no distinctions between mutually willing eroticism and unwanted, violent assaults, and criminalizes minors for consensual erotic activity with other minors (Levine and Meiners[1] 2020; Taylor[2] 2018).

The influence of sex-positive and anti-carceral feminism remains marginal in comparison to the dominance of carceral feminism (Angela Davis et al.[3] 2022; Aya Gruber, 2020[4]). It could be said that the loathing felt by some MAPs, particularly boylovers towards feminists as a group is similar in magnitude to the derision which present day feminists show towards boy-attracted males. For an account of activism against the MAP-youth rights organization NAMBLA, written by a self-identified feminist, see the 1992 issue of Women's magazine Off Our Backs here.

Reasons for loathing of "feminism" among MAPs

A number of reasons can be speculatively offered:

  • The role of feminists in the social purity movement of the Victorian era, and their role in raising the Age of Consent. Perception of feminism as a founder member of the child sexual abuse psychiatry agenda of the late 1970s, 80s and onwards, with the establishment of psychiatric organizations such as The Leadership Council, sometimes fronted by suspected exclusionary feminists.
  • Conflation of pederasty (a practice that brings with it a considerable historical tradition) with the fledgling incest model of Child Sexual Abuse. The perception that this generalization involves a knowing revision of that well-established history.
  • Failure of feminists to explain experiences of boys and boylovers that run contrary to those speculated in feminist critiques of intergenerational relationships.
  • Failure of feminists to identify with or even tentatively address issues related to masculinity. Prof. John P. De Cecco argued that identity essentialist feminists "are jealous of men who show the kind of nurturance that only females are supposed to posses".[5]
  • The perception of modern feminism as female elitism ("feminazi", etc) and/or institutionalized model of covertly exercised authority.
  • Attempts by feminists to represent (gay) youth and encourage their "rights" and "participation" whilst at the same time infantalizing them and denying their autonomy.
  • Alliances between radical feminists (TERFs/SWERFs) and violently anti-pedophile ideologies - particularly those of the right. These alliances have been rejuvenated after the MAP Movement achieved basic visibility in the 2020s.
  • Plain misogyny.

Whilst many of these grievances may have more than a firm foothold in reality, it can certainly be said that their airing has done little good for the cause of boylove or MAPs in general.

Pro-choice/pro-youth Feminism reading list

As mentioned earlier on, some contrary examples exist. A few potential starting points follow:

1st-wave Feminism

Emma Goldman

Wikipedia states that Emma Goldman (June 27, 1869 – May 14, 1940) was an anarchist political activist and writer. She played a pivotal role in the development of anarchist political philosophy in North America and Europe in the first half of the 20th century.

When the child reaches adolescence, it meets, added to the home and school restrictions, with a vast amount of hard traditions of social morality. The cravings of love and sex are met with absolute ignorance by the majority of parents, who consider it as something indecent and improper, something disgraceful, almost criminal, to be suppressed and fought like some terrible disease. [...] Some will ask, what about weak natures, must they not be protected? Yes, but to be able to do that, it will be necessary to realize that education of children is not synonymous with herdlike drilling and training. If education should really mean anything at all, it must insist upon the free growth and development of the innate forces and tendencies of the child.

Emma Goldman, 'The Child and Its Enemies', in Mother Earth, Vol. 1: No. 2 (April 1906).[6]

2nd-wave Feminism

Simone de Beauvoir

Beauvoir was a highly influential French public intellectual and a leading voice of 2nd wave feminism. She was a communist, existentialist, feminist author, interested in understanding and overcoming limitations on human freedom (what existentialists call living in “Bad Faith”). In the West, Beauvoir is best known for her life-long unconventional partnership with existentialist philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, as well as her book “The Second Sex” (1949), often considered the starting inspiration point of second-wave feminism and a foundational text for social constructionist theories of gender, with its famous line: “one is not born, but rather, becomes a woman”. Beauvoir was one of the signatories of the French petition calling to abolish age of consent laws. Below we quote from scholarship below which explains her theories on childhood, and her sexual relationships with her young students.

In Beauvoir’s ongoing project to explore the possibility of moral freedom, childhood is repeatedly pinpointed as the moment when the greatest failure can occur. The child remains within the adult as a haunting, ‘dutiful’ presence of the past; furthering the situating fact of birth, childhood sets limitations for the individual. Children are born with a certain body, and within certain sociopolitical and cultural conditions; both condition the emergence of their subjectivity. For Beauvoir, early childhood experiences wound children by instilling in them a belief in essentialism and in unquestionable authorities. [...] In childhood, one is kept under the illusion, carefully created by adults, that universal moral principles exist. (p. 332). With astonishment, revolt and disrespect the child little by little asks himself, “Why must I act that way? What good is it? And what will happen if I act another way?” He discovers his subjectivity; he discovers that of others.’ (Beauvoir, Ethics of Ambiguity, 39). Teenage crisis, for Beauvoir, is precisely the shock of finding one’s questions unanswered, of having to accept one’s subjectivity and one’s potential independence from arbitrary adult prescriptions. By questioning the world, teenagers can extract themselves from the behaviours of bad faith encouraged by the ready-made judgements of their families and educators (pp. 335-336). [C]hildhood itself becomes a space of […] conflict between what is and what could be. Inquisitive, dissatisfied, suspicious: the child, for Beauvoir, embodies the fugitive vision that one can have of freedom and transcendence even as one is carefully conditioned to engage in bad faith. Her portrayal of childhood thus exacerbates a central tension of existentialism: the individual aspiration towards the future, clashing against a quickly solidifying situation (p. 336).

Clémentine Beauvais, ‘Simone de Beauvoir and the Ambiguity of Childhood’, in Paragraph, 38:3 (2015), 329–346.[7][8]

Beauvoir's posthumously published journals and letters from 1939-41 reveal that she engaged in sexual affairs with students and former students from her philosophy classes; she often led them to her hotel room to tutor them in philosophy and, eventually, take them to bed. (p. 149)

Margaret A. Simons, ‘Lesbian Connections: Simone de Beauvoir and Feminism', in Signs, 18:1 (Autumn, 1992), 136-161.[9]

Shulamith Firestone

  • Chapter 4 - 'Down With Childhood', in The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution (New York: Bantam Books, 1970).[10]

Dr. Ohad Zehavi discusses Firestone's philosophy which sees 'childhood as hell', writing that:

According to Firestone, "sex forms a class division, but so does age. [...] Children, according to Firestone, are an oppressed group just like women: ‘children of every class are lower-class, just as women have always been’. This oppression is brought about not only by the vast segregation of children, primarily (but not exclusively) by means of the education system, but also by children’s economic dependency, by their constant subjection to external authority and by their overall disenfranchisement. [...] For Firestone both femininity and childhood are fabricated, constructed myths, and since both myths serve as bases for oppressive social regimes they both should – and could – be eradicated. As a result we would no longer recognise a person as man or woman, adult or child, thus ‘clearing the way for a fully “human” condition’".

Ohad Zehavi, 'Becoming-woman, becoming-child: A joint political programme' (pp. 242-243) in Feminism and the Politics of Childhood: Friends or Foes?[11]

Germaine Greer

In 1975, she wrote of the experience of one of her school friends:

Sexual intercourse between grown men and little girls is automatically termed rape under most codes of law. It does not matter whether the child invites it or even whether she seduces the adult; he and he only is guilty of a felony. From the child’s point of view and from the commonsense point of view, there is an enormous difference between intercourse with a willing little girl and the forcible penetration of the small vagina of a terrified child. One woman I know enjoyed sex with her uncle all through her childhood, and never realized that anything was unusual until she went away to school. What disturbed her then was not what her uncle had done but the attitude of her teachers and the school psychiatrist. They assumed that she must have been traumatized and disgusted and therefore in need of very special help. In order to capitulate to their expectation, she began to fake symptoms she did not feel, until at length she began to feel truly guilty for not having felt guilty. She ended up judging herself quite harshly for this innate lechery

Germaine Greer, 'Seduction is a Four-Letter Word', in LeRoy G. Schultz, Rape Victimology, ed. by Shultz (Charles C. Thomas Publishers: Springfield, Illinois, U.S.A. 1975), p. 377.[12]

A woman of taste is a pederast — boys rather than men.

Germaine Greer, from archived interview (2003).[13]

When asked about her book, The Beautiful Boy,[14] Greer replies:

It's part of the joy of life is admiring the beauty of things that are beautiful. What is important to me about the Boy is that once upon a time his beauty was understood and celebrated by people of both sexes. A boy was allowed to dress in very bright colours, he was allowed to show himself off in the street, he dyed his hair, he wore make-up, [...] he wore tight pants and cropped jackets and so on. And the girls looked down from behind their jalousie and talked about the best-looking boys. Now, that's still evident in rock culture, where a lot of it is just straight sexual display.

[Interviewer]: You said that one of the things that attracts you about boys was "semen that runs like tap water."

[Greer]: That's not such a bad idea, is it girls? [...] I mean, the recharge time is remarkably short, which is a good thing. If what you want is a high level of excitement

Greer also defended a UK female teacher, Helen Goddard, who had a lesbian affair instigated by a 15-year old female student at her school. She wrote:

So how old was she? How old was he? I don’t know and I don’t very much care. I know I’m supposed to care. I’m supposed to think that falling in love with people under the legal age of consent is evidence of deep perversion and vileness, but I don’t. Young people shouldn’t fall in love, you wish they wouldn’t, and yet they do, very often with someone rather older than they. The results are nearly always catastrophic, whether the love is returned or denied. When an old friend of mine was still a schoolboy, he climbed into the bed of his guardian, who he adored. His appalled guardian threw him out of the house. He swallowed rat-poison. I’m not supposed to talk about Helen Goddard’s victim as her lover. She’s not supposed to be capable of being anybody’s lover. She’s still not 16. She has tried to take the blame, she had admitted that it was she who first kissed Goddard, but it makes no odds. As a 15-year-old she was incapable of consent, let alone of seduction. In Shakespeare’s play of star-crossed love, we are told repeatedly that Juliet is 14. We don’t know how old Romeo is. There’s nothing to say he isn’t 27, like Helen Goddard. Yet it is Juliet who instigates the affair and precipitates the clandestine marriage and its consummation. And as for deceiving one’s parents, you can’t go a wholer hog than Juliet did. In a sane society lovers are protected from mutual self-immolation; in a crazy one they are driven to it.

Germaine Greer, in ‘Jazz Lady’s affair was foolish not evil; Falling for a minor is not evidence of perversion or vileness, says Germaine Greer’, The Times (London), September 23rd, 2009.

Kate Millett

Part of the patriarchal family structure involves the control of the sexual life of children; indeed, the control of children totally. Children […] have no money which, in a money-economy, is one of the most important sources of their oppression. Certainly, one of children’s essential rights is to express themselves sexually, probably primarily with each other but with adults as well. […] The problem here is that […] cross-generational relationships take place in a situation of inequality. Children are in a very precarious position when they enter into relationships with adults, not only in a concrete material sense but emotionally as well, because their personhood is not acknowledged in our society. […] Of course, these relationships can be non-exploitative and, considering the circumstances, they are probably heroic and very wonderful; but we have to admit they can be exploitative as well (p. 83).

What is really at issue is children’s rights and not, as it has been formulated up to now, merely the right of sexual access to children. […] I would like to see a broader movement involving young people who would be making the decisions because it’s their issue and their fight. (pp. 84-85).

Kate Millett, Sexual Revolution and the Liberation of Children: An Interview with Kate Millett by Mark Blasius, in Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia, ed. by Marjan Sax and Sjuul Deckwitz, 2:8 (1992 {1980}), pp. 83-86.[15]

Sex itself is presented as a crime to children. It is how adults control children, how they forbid them sexuality [...] Despite the degree of sexual activity that actually goes on among children, I think adults have been all too effective, not only in poisoning sexuality but also in preventing children from understanding or experiencing it." (p. 218).

" [T]he rhetoric and practice that surrounds children has abjured them since infancy to chastity. "Don't touch yourself there, that's nasty." [...] here is a little person who has been told that one whole section of the body has a crime attached to it. Imagine, "Never, never look at your left hand." It seems silly to children, of course, but power and force is conveyed by the phrase, "that's awful," principally because it is not explained. And the explanation that "it's dirty"? Well, thinks the child, obviously it isn't; I've taken a bath. What do they mean, it's dirty? So the taboo, because of its irrationality and mysterious quality, is yet more harmful. It attacks the whole system of mental confidence and reason itself. (p. 219).

Parental policing of young females is the one great, unexamined oppression, not only in their lives but in our own as adult women. [...] Considering its possibilities, sexuality has been very effectively policed. Control works in stopping the behavior; where it doesn't work, it succeeds still because there is so much guilt; so much shame for whatever sexual activity does take place; so much fear of discovery that when sexually active children are discovered, squelched, and separated, control succeeds." [...] Since sexuality was forbidden knowledge, contraception is also forbidden, unfortunately; the culprits can become victims [of unwanted pregnancy] as well. [...] Adults create this pool of ignorance - and that is what it is: ignorance forced upon a group of young people, not innocence. (p. 220).

Intergenerational sex could perhaps in the future be a wonderful opportunity for understanding between human beings. But conditions between adults and children preclude any sexual relationship that is not in some sense exploitative. This is not actually the fault of the adults involved, but of the entire social structure. To succeed, a relationship needs an egalitarian space and a balance between the two partners which it cannot by virtue of society have.” [...] It is difficult therefore to imagine the sexual emancipation of children without coming to understand how necessary are other forms of emancipation as well, all parts of progressive social change in years to come. That children have autonomy - that they do not belong to their biological parents, that they have a right to money, to a choice in where they live, that they are not property, that they are not slaves, that they belong to themselves - is a most revolutionary idea. (pp. 222-223).

Kate Millett, Beyond Politics? Children and Sexuality, in Pleasure and Danger: Exploring Female Sexuality, ed. by Carole S. Vance, 2nd edn., (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1992 {1984}), pp. 217–224.[16]

Andrea Dworkin

Editors: Most surprisingly, as MAP activist Roger Moody pointed out (1986), Dworkin made supportive statements in her 1st published book Woman Hating (1974), in which she also supports the practice of incest and bestiality[17] in a future "androgynous" society, before turning militantly against age-disparate eroticism in later years.

As for children, they too are erotic beings, closer to androgyny than the adults who oppress them. Children are fully capable of participating in community, and have every right to live out their own erotic impulses. In androgynous community, those impulses would retain a high degree of non-specificity and would no doubt show the rest of us the way into sexual self-realization. The distinctions between “children” and “adults,” and the social institutions which enforce those distinctions, would disappear as androgynous community develops.

Andrea Dworkin, (1974). Woman Hating: A Radical Look at Sexuality (E.P. Dutton: Boston, Massachusetts), p. 192.

Beatrice Faust

Children cannot be wholly self-determining as long as factors like parental unemployment, poverty, or homelessness force them into prostitution or pornography. And they cannot exercise satisfactory self-determination without adequate sex education. Women and homosexuals, as well as children and child-lovers, are oppressed by the view that procreational sex is the only erotic activity that rates the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. [...] But this view cannot survive the economic pressure for fewer children and the technocracy's demand for less, but better educated workers. (p. 114).

Beatrice Faust, (1986). 'The paedophiles', in The Betrayal of Youth: Radical Perspectives on Childhood Sexuality, Intergenerational Sex, and the Social Oppression of Children and Young People, ed. by Warren Middleton (CL Publications: London), pp. 107-115.[18]

[T]he so-called Sexual Revolution, and the emergence of the Women's Liberation Movement from the New Left, is a serendipitous experiment: women were given strong permissions to enjoy sex with the same frequency and on the same terms as men, and they rejected the notion, retreating into lesbianism, radical celibacy, puritanism and traditionally feminine models of sex. Even at the outset of the so-called sexual revolution, boys began intercourse earlier than girls and found sexual activity more satisfying […] Girls mature physically before boys but boys seek sexual knowledge and experience earlier and more actively than girls (cruising). This being so, it seems that a uniform age of consent law for both sexes and/or an age of consent law that does not allow for the possibility of a consensual relationship will be discriminatory against boys and damaging for some children of both sexes. The Netherlands provides a model that avoids this risk. (p. 83).

Beatrice Faust, (1995). "Child sexuality and age of consent laws: The Netherlands model." Australasian Gay and Lesbian Law Journal, 5, pp. 78-85.[19]

Stevi Jackson

[A] great deal of effort is spent in keeping children childish. Not being encouraged towards independence, they remain dependent; unused to looking after themselves, they stay vulnerable; having their smallest needs fulfilled by adults, they are often unable to perform simple tasks well within their capabilities. Children are frequently sent to school unable to dress themselves at an age when, in other societies and in earlier days of our own, they would be beginning to make a real contribution to the life and work of their community. If a child expresses interest in adult affairs or engages in adult pursuits it is thought unusual, even extraordinary. Children who behave like adults are regarded as at best amusing and at worst thoroughly obnoxious. If we were not so interested in nurturing immaturity, would the word 'precocious' have become an insult? (p. 27).

The activities and interests of children in other societies may contrast sharply with our ideas of what is natural or appropriate for them. We would find it strange for a boy of six or seven to be preoccupied with financial provision for his marriage, yet this is considered natural among the Tallensi. We would not expect a child of this age to be making a real contribution to the economic survival of the community, yet this is commonplace in many simpler societies. [...] It is unusual for five-year-olds in our society to be fully aware of the facts of human sex and reproduction, but elsewhere this is normal.

Despite all the different forms of childhood that exist throughout the world, our society might be singled out as distinctly odd (p. 29).

[...] Given the connections between the status of women and children, the ideas of the women's liberation movement should help us to raise questions about the status of children and the adult power wielded over them, and to consider the possibility of redefining their sexuality. It is because we keep children dependent, vulnerable and asexual that women come to share these qualities. It is because only the male sex learns to break free from these bonds that men become more autonomous than women. It is because male autonomy is associated with power and aggression that men maintain control over women and that the need is created to 'protect' women and children. We need to question whether our apparent concern for children, our protectiveness I towards them, is just a subtle form of oppression, as it is with women.

[...] I will now commit the final heresy by stating clearly my belief that we do more harm than good in enforcing sexual ignorance on children. In attempting to protect children from sex we expose them to danger, in trying to preserve their innocence we expose them to guilt. In keeping both sexes asexual, and then training them to become sexual in different ways, we perpetuate sexual inequality, exploitation and oppression. (p. 180).

Stevi Jackson. Childhood and Sexuality (Basil Blackwell: Oxford, 1982).[20]

Resisting Anti-Porn Feminism

Some feminist thought supportive of intergenerational rights came during what anthropologist Gayle Rubin called "The Feminist Sex Wars," where sex-positive feminists (e.g. Strossen[21],; Echols[22]) resisted attempts to legally define all pornography as tantamount to rape (see "Porn is the theory, rape is its practise" and West[23]; Linz et al.[24]; Schauer[25]; [26]) and prohibit/criminalize sex work (such feminists are now called "SWERFs"[27]) under the banner of "feminism." Some relevant readings below:

  • Nettie Pollard, 'The Small Matter of Children,' in Bad Girls and Dirty Pictures: The Challenge to Reclaim Feminism, ed. by Alison Assiter and Avedon Carol (Boulder, Colorado: Pluto Press, 1993), pp. 105-111.
  • Brenda Cossman, Shannon Bell, Lise Gotell, Becki Ross, Bad Attitude/s on Trial: Pornography, Feminism, and the Butler Decision (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1997). Shannon Bell's chapter, The image cannot be seen, includes her interview with Matthew McGowan, a Canadian hustler and poet who stood trial for having filmed himself and 2 male friends who were 14-years-old and thus had reached the national age of consent at the time, engaging in mutually willing (consensual) vanilla sex the year prior, when McGowan was 22 years-old. Canadian law changed to make depictions of sexual activity involving people who appear to be under 18 illegal, meaning that their sex was legal but filming was not. In her chapter, Bell interprets Canada's then-recent change in porn law through the lens of moral panic, and criticizes the obfuscation, denial and silencing of young people's voices by 'expert' truth claims:

The hysteria mounts the closer the sexual activity gets to or can be portrayed as getting to children. Perhaps that is why 'seventeen year olds at the height of their sexual powers are called children' (CBC, 1994, 38) in the London porn panic. The media played up the hysteria [...] As the research coordinator at the London Family Court Clinic explains: 'victim impact statements are written by clinicians who have a lot of experience in child victimization.' There is 'the victim's version of the story' and 'what we think it means' (Ibid., 40) (p. 207, p. 211).[28]

Contemporary 3rd/4th Wave Feminism

[T]o understand the violation that incest can be—and also to distinguish between those occasions of incest that are violation and those that are not—it is unnecessary to figure the body of the child exclusively as a surface imposed upon from the outside. [...] So I keep adding this qualification: “when incest is a violation,” suggesting that I think that there may be occasions in which it is not. Why would I talk that way? Well, I do think that there are probably forms of incest that are not necessarily traumatic or which gain their traumatic character by virtue of the consciousness of social shame that they produce. [...]'[T]he very existence of a taboo against incest presumes that a family structure is already there, for how else would one understand the prohibition on sexual relations with members of one’s own family without a prior conception of family? [Explanation[29]]

Judith Butler, 'Quandaries of the Incest Taboo', in Undoing Gender (Routledge: New York, 2004), pp. 152-161 (quoting pp. 155-157).

At what age is consent to sexual relations permissible? Indeed, the views on this matter are quite diverse, and they differ according to country and gender, according to whether the law seeks to end sexual trafficking, whether the law is acknowledging customs regarding child brides, and whether the kind of sex is permissible or not: So age of consent laws vary according to whether sexual practice is deemed heterosexual or homosexual, or within marriage or before marriage. In most cases, sexuality is presumed by such legal codes to be heterosexual, so the lack of a differential regulation between straight and not straight sex is less a sign of equal treatment, than of the unthinkability of non-heterosexual law within the legal codes regulating sexuality — after all, even prohibiting homosexual sex is a way of acknowledging that it exists. (p. 5).

"We are used to hearing that there are consenting adults and then there are those who are incompetent to consent. But perhaps incompetence is part of the very process of "yes"-saying. We are not competent to know all the future consequences of the sexual relations to which we say "yes," or to which we willingly or ambivalently acquiesce. We are never fully active, knowing, and competently predictive at such. moments. We open, sometimes in spite of ourselves, to a future we cannot fully control, even though we can steer and direct and try to give it shape in one way or another to the best or our abilities. Perhaps the opposite of the subject of consent is not the subject who is too young or too inexperienced or suffering incompetence. Although there are cases where that is legally right, to be sure, we have to remember that something of childhood persists in adult sexuality, making us more vulnerable or less knowing than we might like, that a certain incompetence pervades our efforts to predict in advance how things will go, and that even a certain inexperience is there at the outset of sexual encounter and in its midst. The juridical [legal] subject of consent rules out the humility of unknowingness without which we cannot really understand sexuality. We can, as the former Antioch College rules of sexual conduct tried to do, make every sexual act discussable between two people in advance and a settled matter of consent before embarking on any touch. At such moments, the law has pervaded sexual encounter; the law has drenched our discourse. We expect knowingness precisely at those moments when unknowingness is inseparable from sexuality itself. The law then functions as a defense against the unknown, and tell me: who would have sex if it were really known in advance exactly what it would be like? (pp. 24-25).

Judith Butler. (2011). 'Sexual Consent: Some Thoughts on Psychoanalysis and Law', in Columbia Journal of Gender and Law, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 3-27.[30]

Other feminist writers of interest are listed below:

  • Kids Club Anthology #2 - She said - Women, Lesbians, and Feminist Speak Out about Youthlove - This anthology (2019) collects material on sexual attraction to youth, youth sexuality, age-gap relationships, and the age of consent written by young gay people, women, lesbians, and feminist, from the late 70s to the mid-90s.
  • Danielle Egan, Gail Hawkes, and Emma Renold - these 3 contemporary feminists tend to co-author together, criticizing panic discourses over the sexualization of young people that neglect to take account of young people's voices agency
  • Children, Sexuality and Sexualization, ed. by Emma Renold et al., (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015).[31]
  • Danielle Egan, Becoming Sexual: A Critical Appraisal of the Sexualization of Girls (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2013) (Book)[32].
  • Danielle Egan and Gail L. Hawkes, ‘Endangered Girls and Incendiary Objects: Unpacking the Discourse on Sexualization’, in Sexuality and Culture, 12 (2008), 291–311.
  • Gail Hawkes and Danielle Egan, ‘Landscapes of Erotophobia: The Sexual(ized) Child in The Postmodern Anglophone West’, in Sexuality and Culture, 12 (2008), 193–203.
  • Danielle Egan and Gail Hawkes, ‘The problem with protection: Or, why we need to move towards recognition and the sexual agency of children’, in Continuum, 23:3 (2009), 289-400.
  • Danielle Egan and Gail Hawkes, "Sexuality, youth and the perils of endangered innocence: how history can help us get past the panic", in Gender and Education, 24(3) (2012), 269–284.
  • Emma Renold and Jessica Ringrose, ‘Schizoid Subjectivities? Re- theorizing Teen-Girls’ Sexual Cultures in an Era of ‘Sexualization,’ in Journal of Sociology, 47:4 (2011), 389–409.
  • Emma Renold and Jessica Ringrose, ‘Feminisms re-figuring ‘sexualization’, sexuality and ‘the girl’, in Feminist Theory, 14:3 (2013), 247-254.
  • Deborah L. Tolman, ‘Doing Desire: Adolescent Girls’ Struggles for/with Sexuality’, in Gender and Society, 8:3 (1994), 324–342.
  • Laina Y. Bay-Cheng and Amanda E. Lewis, 'Our “Ideal Girl”: Prescriptions of Female Adolescent Sexuality in a Feminist Mentorship Program', in Affilia: Journal of Women and Social Work, 21:1 (2006), 71-83.[33]
  • Joseph J. Fischel, 'Catharine MacKinnon’s Wayward Children', in differences, 30:1 (2019), pp. 34-54.[34]
  • Feona Attwood, ‘Sluts and Riot Grrrls: Female Identity and Sexual Agency’, in Journal of Gender Studies, 16:3 (2007), 233–247.
  • Kari Lerum and Shari L. Dworkin, ‘Sexual Agency is not a Problem of Neoliberalism: Feminism, Sexual Justice, and the Carceral Turn’, in Sex Roles, 73 (2015), 311-319.
  • Lynne M. Phillips, ‘Recasting Consent: Agency and Victimization in Adult-Teen Relationships’, in New Versions of Victims: Feminists Struggle with the Concept, ed. by Sharon Lamb (New York: New York University Press, 1999), pp. 82-108.[35]
  • Michelle Fine, Sexuality, Schooling, and Adolescent Females: The Missing Discourse of Desire, in Harvard Educational Review, 58:1 (1988), 29–54[36]; Cf. Fine, X. Desire: The Morning (and 15 years) After, in Feminism & Psychology, 15:1 (2005), 54-60.[37]
  • Lynda Marin, Mother and Child: The Erotic Bond, in Mother's Journeys: Feminists Write about Mothering, ed. by Maureen T. Reddy, Martha Roth, Amy Sheldon, (Spinsters Ink, Minneapolis, 1994), pp. 9-21.[38]
  • Marjan Sax and Sjuul Deckwitz, 'You Learn Better on An Old Bicycle: Erotic and Sexual Relations Between Women and Minors', in Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia, Vol. 2, No. 4 (1992): Special Women's lssue, pp. 2-13. [Newgon: Marjan Sax is listed as a "feminst sex activist, political scientist, and writer"].
  • Jo Bridgeman and Daniel Monk, “Introduction: Reflections on the Relationship between Feminism and Child Law,” in Feminist Perspectives on Child Law, ed. Jo Bridgeman and Daniel Monk (London: Cavendish, 2000).[39]
  • Carol Tavris, Beware the Incest-Survivor Machine, in the New York Times (1993)[40]; Tavris, The uproar over sexual abuse research and its findings, in Society (2000).[41] [Responds to the Rind et al controversy].
  • Yasmin Nair,[42] feminist/queer activist and author, co-edited Against Equality [43] (2014), including contributions from early MAP/Youth Rights advocates including Bill Andriette and John P. De Cecco. On her personal website, Nair published relevant articles, including: Can We Talk?: Censorship, Pedophilia, and Panic, in Wind City Times (2005).[44]; From Queer To Gay: The Rise and Fall of Milo [Yiannopoulos], self-published (2017)[45]. In Adopting Difference: Race, Sex, and the Archaeology of Power in the Farrow-Allen Case (published in 2014, reproduced online in 2020)[46], Nair argued that critics tended to avoid or downplay the power Mia Farrow wielded over Woody Allen and their children.

For Nair, Mia Farrow:

successfully painted herself as a powerless woman wounded by a powerful and wealthy man. Allen is certainly wealthy and powerful, but Farrow has a lineage in Hollywood that is much older than his, and possesses tremendous political and cultural influence. Much of her power has manifested in the ways that she has managed to even change the law to enable her to satisfy her urge to adopt.

Commentary

BoyChat contributor, Anacreon:

Historically, from what I've read I get the impression that the earliest modern feminism, which got started about two hundred years ago on the heels of the French Revolution, was probably a liberating idea. The early Romantics who espoused it, for instance the poet Percy Shelley and his wife Mary, associated it with free love and equality of the sexes within the context of a generally emancipated state of society. These people were wild radicals, the hippies of their day, and so alienated from mainstream society that they felt compelled to leave their native England.

Later on something horrible happened. I suspect it was probably Victorianism. Decades after the high Romantic period, when feminism got started again in the late nineteenth century following a long hiatus, it emerged as a deeply bourgeois movement in the worst sense of that term. It was intensely puritanical, and oriented toward controlling male behavior. It became associated with the "temperance" movement and suppression of "vice," meaning chiefly prostitution. In the United States it involved itself in the ultimately successful push for Prohibition, a disaster that brought terrible troubles with organized crime that plague us to this day.

So I guess you could say that feminism went bad when it became respectable. In this sense it resembles the gay movement, which from the viewpoint of boylovers joined the oppressor when it opted for assimilation and so decided to eject undesirables. Contemporary feminism seems to me to be entirely modeled on the second, Victorian version of itself, not at all on the first. Modern feminists are interested in domination rather than in freedom, obsessed with control through the infantilization of everyone in sight, and fanatically eager to wield the gelding knife. So as you rightly observe their movement operates generally as a viciously regressive force, often the unacknowledged ally of rabid fundamentalism.[47]

U.S. historian Beryl Satter:[48]

it is undeniable that feminists and therapists with feminist sympathies elaborated and promoted the sexual abuse paradigm." (p. 426). American clinical psychologist Janice Haaken, Satter explains, "interprets sexual abuse accusations as a complex phenomenon encompassing women's desire to speak the hidden truths of their lives and express rage at a broad range of "boundary violations" that are the lot of most women. According to Haaken, sexual abuse accusations symbolize women's rebellion against their fathers and against expectations that they should remain loyal to their families. These accusations express forbidden emotional and sexual fantasies and might also express conflicts between women that are repressed in some feminist circles. (Ibid).

Similar to Richard Beck (see Breland, 2019[49]), Satter argues that the sexual abuse paradigmn rose to prominence during the 1980s due to its use across the political spectrum in a time of economic upheaval, of which warring feminist factions were only one force of many:

Historically, crusades to "save the children" emerge at the moment when progressive movements are beginning to falter. This fits the 1980s context. As social programs serving families were severely reduced, sexual abuse narratives were one way to speak about family pain. Ultimately, the crusades against child abuse gained support from all sides: from feminists [...] and liberals [...]; conservatives anxious about sexual hedonism and evangelical Christians anxious about sexual sin; therapists, attorneys, and criminologists who sought to expand their professional authority; a sensation-hungry media seeking new sexual narratives; and politicians seeking a cause sure to attract support. In addition, Reagan and Bush officials promoted the idea that the greatest threat to American children was pornography rather than poverty. They funded reports on child abuse and widely disseminated the most extreme claims about the sexual victimization of children. (p. 452).

See also

References

  1. The Feminist and the Sex Offender
  2. News & Resources: review – Taylor: ‘Foucault, Feminism, & Sex Crimes’
  3. Abolition. Feminism. Now.
  4. See Aya Gruber, The Feminist War on Crime: The Unexpected Role of Women's Liberation in Mass Incarceration (University of California Press, 2020).
  5. De Cecco Paidika interview (1987) - (Archived PDF copy).
  6. Emma Goldman, 'The Child and Its Enemies', in Mother Earth, Vol. 1: No. 2 (April 1906)
  7. Clémentine Beauvais, ‘Simone de Beauvoir and the Ambiguity of Childhood’, in Paragraph, 38:3 (2015), 329–346.
  8. Beauvais - Jstor
  9. Margaret A. Simons, ‘Lesbian Connections: Simone de Beauvoir and Feminism', in Signs, 18:1 (Autumn, 1992), 136-161.
  10. Chapter 4 - 'Down With Childhood', in The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution (New York: Bantam Books, 1970).
  11. Ohad Zehavi, 'Becoming-woman, becoming-child: A joint political programme', in Feminism and the Politics of Childhood: Friends or Foes?, ed. by Rachel Rosen and Katherine Twamley (London: UCL Press, 2018), pp. 241-256.
  12. Also quoted in social worker Thomas D. Oellerich's scholarship. E.g. Oellerich, Thomas D. (2000), "Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman: Politically Incorrect - Scientifically Correct", Sexuality and Culture, 4 (2): 67–81
  13. https://web.archive.org/web/20080203035904/http://www.abc.net.au/tv/enoughrope/transcripts/s946782.htm
  14. The Beautiful Boy (London: Thames & Hudson, 2003) - Ipce PDF
  15. Kate Millett, Sexual Revolution and the Liberation of Children: An Interview with Kate Millett by Mark Blasius, in Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia, ed. by Marjan Sax and Sjuul Deckwitz, 2:8 (1992 {1980}), pp. 83-86.
  16. Kate Millett, Beyond Politics? Children and Sexuality, in Pleasure and Danger: Exploring Female Sexuality, ed. by Carole S. Vance, 2nd edn., (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1992 {1984}), pp. 217–224.
  17. Andrea Dworkin, (1974). Woman Hating: A Radical Look at Sexuality (E.P. Dutton: Boston, Massachusetts). For example, Dworkin wrote: "The parent-child relationship is primarily erotic because all human relationships are primarily erotic. The incest taboo is a particularized form of repression, one which functions as the bulwark of all the other repressions. The incest taboo ensures that however free we become, we never become genuinely free. The incest taboo, because it denies us essential fulfillment with the parents whom we love with our primary energy, forces us to internalize those parents and constantly seek them, or seek to negate them, in the minds, bodies, and hearts of other humans who are not our parents and never will be." "The incest taboo does the worst work of the culture: it teaches us the mechanisms o f repressing and internalizing erotic feeling — it forces us to develop those mechanisms in the first place; it forces us to particularize sexual feeling, so that it congeals into a need for a particular sexual “object” ; it demands that we place the nuclear family above the human family. The destruction o f the incest taboo is essential to the development of cooperative human community based on the free-flow of natural androgynous eroticism." (p. 189)." "In contemporary society relationships between people and other animals often reflect the sadomasochistic complexion of human relationship. Animals in our culture are often badly abused, the objects of violence and cruelty, the foil of repressed and therefore very dangerous human sexuality. Some animals, like horses and big dogs, become surrogate cocks, symbols of ideal macho virility. Needless to say, in androgynous community, human and other-animal relationships would become more explicitly erotic, and that eroticism would not degenerate into abuse." (p. 188).
  18. Faust, B. (1986). 'The paedophiles', in The Betrayal of Youth: Radical Perspectives on Childhood Sexuality, Intergenerational Sex, and the Social Oppression of Children and Young People, Edited by Warren Middleton (CL Publications: London), pp. 107-115.
  19. Beatrice Faust, (1995). "Child sexuality and age of consent laws: The Netherlands model." Australasian Gay and Lesbian Law Journal, 5, pp. 78-85.
  20. Childhood and Sexuality (click for archived PDF)
  21. Strossen 1993
  22. Echols, 1983
  23. West, 1987
  24. Linz, 1987
  25. Schauer, 1987
  26. Fischel, 2010
  27. SWERF - Wiktionary
  28. Cossman, 1997
  29. One commentator on heretictoc.com wrote: “Under what exact conditions is incest “not necessarily traumatic”?” Butler elaborates on the following pages that the concept of “incest” can only exist as long as there’s the concept of the white heterosexual middle-class family. After all, without the idea of a “family” what does incest even mean? Therefore, incest is, according to Butler, not inherently traumatic. Or to give a concrete example that I believe most people would agree upon is not traumatic, let’s think of two siblings who are infertile and who have sex with each other but neither they themselves nor anyone else is aware that they are indeed relatives. This is what Butler means by “not necessarily traumatic”.
  30. File:Judith Butler - 2011 - Sexual Consent - Psychoanalysis and Law.pdf (internal link). This paper is based on a paper presented in 2011, which was filmed and has been archived here and here.
  31. Children, Sexuality and Sexualization
  32. Becoming Sexual (Book) on libgen
  33. https://doi.org/10.1177/0886109905283137
  34. Joseph J. Fischel, 'Catharine MacKinnon’s Wayward Children', in differences, 30:1 (2019), pp. 34-54.
  35. New Versions of Victims
  36. https://doi.org/10.17763/haer.58.1.u0468k1v2n2n8242
  37. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959353505049708
  38. http://www.ratical.org/many_worlds/MaCTEB.html
  39. Feminist Perspectives on Child Law PDF
  40. https://web.archive.org/web/20150419234012/https://www.nytimes.com/1993/01/03/books/beware-the-incest-survivor-machine.html?pagewanted=1
  41. https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/00-018_uproar.htm
  42. Yasmin Nair: About
  43. Against Equality
  44. https://yasminnair.com/can-we-talk-censorship-pedophilia-and-panic-16-november-2005/
  45. https://yasminnair.com/from-queer-to-gay-the-rise-and-fall-of-milo/
  46. https://yasminnair.com/adopting-difference-race-sex-and-the-archaeology-of-power-in-the-farrow-allen-case-3/
  47. http://boychat.org/messages/1147733.htm
  48. https://www.jstor.org/stable/3704895 Satter, 2003
  49. Breland, 2009