Commentator Melinda Tankard Reist, sometimes supported by observations from journalist and researcher Nina Funnell, has published three pieces in the last three weeks, peddling her views on the “proper” expression and representation of female sexuality in the media and popular culture.
Given that some of her opinions can only be read as extremist (her war on Victoria’s Secret underwear, for example; her unrelenting insistence that women are doomed to be the hapless victims of men) it is astonishing that the Drum hasn’t come up with anything that directly contests these views, and gives voice to the opinions and feelings of the millions of women who find Victoria’s Secret fun to wear, and consider ourselves anything but victims.
If this right wing agenda manifested in any other subject area on the Drum, we would all be astonished, and a challenge would immediately be published. But not when it’s about controlling how women express our sexuality, apparently.
Tankard Reist’s grim visions of the inevitable baseness of men, the fear of and contempt for female sexuality revealed in her propaganda, continue to dominate the Drum’s pages.
It’s left to a handful of determined commenters to take her on.
Perhaps the Drum doesn’t consider the representation and expression of female sexuality a topic worthy of defense, even on the eve of International Women’s Day.
This is not on, our ABC. There’s no balance here. You should be putting up articles that celebrate female sexuality, and support a woman’s right to decide how she’ll express it. Centuries of patriarchy have tried to control our sexuality, and now we’ve got the Christians at it again. Enough, already.
Why are you assisting the fundamentalists in this project, Jonathan Green, and why aren’t you giving a voice to women who love their sexuality, don’t see any reason to hide it and have no quarrel with underwear companies and stupid songs?
Women who revel in taking responsibility for ourselves, and don’t need MTR and Nina Funnell to do it for us, thanks all the same.
For those of you dissatisfied with the Drum’s promotion (by omission) of a right wing sexual agenda, On Line Opinion will fight back on Friday.
At least there’s still someplace where a woman can say she doesn’t mind a lacy thong and cleavage.
- KanYe West, Melinda Tankard Reist, and the control of the representation of desire. (noplaceforsheep.com)