Tag: erotica

Portraits of the Transgendered Community

The safe environment, comfort and support from the attendees at the Erotic Literary Salon offer people an opportunity to share their sexual memoirs in public.  Sexual identity, cross dressing and fetishes are just a few of the topics shared at the Salon.

Mariette Pathy Allen has taken photos of the transgendered community for over 35 years. The following are excerpts from an article by David Rosenberg.

Moving Portraits of the Transgendered Community Over 35 Years
By David Rosenberg
Posted Friday, May 3, 2013, at 11:05 AM
Slate.com
Kay, ex–Green Baret

Kay, ex–Green Beret Mariette Pathy Allen

Mariette Pathy Allen’s 35-year journey documenting the transgendered community had a serendipitous beginning.

In 1978, Allen and her husband went on a trip to New Orleans and happened to stay in the same inn as a group of cross-dressers. One morning after breakfast, the group began taking pictures by the swimming pool, and Allen, already with her camera equipment, gently asked if she could take a few shots as well.

“I lifted the camera to my eye looking at these people and one person standing opposite me looked back at me and I felt I was looking into a soul, not a man, not a woman, but the essence of a human being, and I thought, I have to have this person in my life,” Allen recalled.

That person, Vicki West, ended up living about 20 blocks from Allen in Manhattan and started introducing Allen to parties, friends, and conferences of people involved in the cross-dressing community.

“I found it beyond fascinating,” Allen said. “I discovered I had something I could contribute. When I started doing portraits of transgendered people, no one was doing it and I had to figure out what would be the most helpful way of doing it, what would be the meaning of it?”

Rachel, watching her father transform into Paula, Philadelphia

James at Fantasia Fair

Elayne with son, Ryan

Elayne with son, Ryan Mariette Pathy Allen

That meaning turned out to help “de-freakify” the community to outsiders and to help the people she photographed feel less stigmatized. While Allen initially began documenting people who considered themselves to be cross-dressers, her work, as well as the evolution of the trans community has expanded to those who identify as gender queer, gender fluid, intersex, and other terms under the umbrella of “transgendered”—“it’s a long alphabet,” Allen said with a laugh.

In 1990, Allen published her first book,Transformations: Crossdressers and Those Who Love Them, a collection of images and interviews of what was then a taboo topic. Allen didn’t necessarily see the book as one that belonged to her, but she said she saw herself as a conduit for people who were aching to have their stories told, many of whom passed around copies, signing them as if it were a yearbook.

“It did a huge amount of good for the people themselves, and I’m still getting thanked years later,” Allen said. “It saved marriages; it was the book they showed their children or parents; it was their way of accessing their coming out. It may have helped people stay in this world. … It was very moving to me.”

Antonia alone at Christmas

Michelle and Betty Ann, Provincetown, Mass.

 When Allen was taking pictures during that time, many of her subjects didn’t know how to behave in front of the camera.

“I was often the first person who was positive and gave them permission and encouraged them [to be who they were],” Allen said.

Feminist Porn Award & Conference – Tristan Taormino – Rachel Kramer Bussel

Glad there is a feminist porn award, women need to realize there is no shame in enjoying hot, racy, sexually explicit material.

I missed Tristan Taormino’s first Feminist Porn Conference, but the following review by Rachel Kramer Bussel has kept me informed.

Excerpt:

Organic, Fair-Trade Porn: On the Hunt for Ethical Smut

by  

Just what exactly is feminist porn? Rachel Kramer Bussel attends the Feminist Porn Awards to find a new generation of erotic performers and producers with a mission.

Feminism has come a long way since Robin Morgan wrote in 1974, “Pornography is the theory, and rape is the practice,”—so far, in fact, that this past weekend saw the eighth-annual Feminist Porn Awards and first Feminist Porn Conference, an offshoot of the just-published The Feminist Porn Book, in Toronto. The mood was celebratory, political, and inquisitive, showcasing a sex-positive feminism that’s about far more than leaning in, or even leaning back.

Yet as far as we’ve come, I still got asked on Facebook when posting about attending, “Is this a joke?” For Toronto sex-toy store Good for Her, organizers of the FPAs, far from it—it’s a selling point. While browsing there, I overheard a staffer touting a film by Erika Lust to a middle-aged male customer as an FPA winner. The seven jurors take their work of judging 110 submissions seriously—but not too seriously, considering they award trophies topped with a crystal butt plug for categories such as Golden Beaver (Canadian content) and Smutty Schoolteacher (sex ed), and the event expanded to a new venue to hold the approximately 550 attendees.

The very act of defining “feminist porn” is one that’s still up in the air. Certainly it’s not the Sheryl Sandberg–endorsed book Porn for Women, with its wink-wink photos of hunky topless guys doing housework, which was exquisitely skewered by online comic xkcd, nor is it “a man and a woman meet at Planet Organic after a gender studies lecture, discuss intersectionality over vegetarian food, and then go back to her flat to bone on last Sunday’s Observer,” jokingly offered up by Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett and Holly Baxter in The New StatesmanDiffering definitions were offered by the awards and by the book’s authors, but all agree that a focus on genuine female pleasure plays a role. Conference organizer Tristan Taormino insisted that porn is “absolutely” the right word (instead of “erotica”). “By not using the term porn, we’re caving in to this idea that porn is low class, for men, not by us or for us.” She calls her own porn, such as FPA winner The Ultimate Guide to Pegging, “organic, free-trade porn,” and urged consumers and creators to take a page from the organic-food movement. “We have to make connections between fair labor practices even when the labor being performed is sex. If you care about the conditions under which your food was made and the conditions under which your jeans were made, then you should care about the conditions under which your pornography is made. You should be willing to pay a little more.”

The use of “feminist” was a bit more controversial.

Read More: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/04/13/free-trade-organic-porn-on-the-hunt-for-ethical-smut.html

Polyamory – May Be Good For You – 5 Myths About Polyamory

This article states 5% of Americans are involved in consensual nonmonogamy. From the anecdotical evidence I have gathered that is a low figure. But keep in mind, it really doesn’t matter what that number is, if this is a life-style you want to pursue, then I suggest you do your homework.

Excellent polyamory myths debunked.

Excerpt from article in Live Science below:

5 Myths About Polyamory

by Stephanie Pappas, LiveScience Senior Writer

Researchers estimate that as many as 5 percent of Americans are currently in relationships involving consensual nonmonogamy — that is, permission to go outside the couple looking for love or sex.

The boundaries in these relationships are remarkably varied, with some couples negotiating one-off “swinging” or partner-swapping experiences. and others forming stable bonds among three, four or five partners simultaneously. The latter is a version of polyamory, relationships in which people have multiple partnerships at once with the full knowledge of all involved.

Polyamorous people have largely flown under the radar, but that’s beginning to change as psychologists become intrigued by this unusual group. The first annual International Academic Polyamory Conference takes place Feb. 15 in Berkeley, Calif., and ongoing studies are examining everything from how jealousy works in polyamorous relationships to how kids in polyamorous familes fare. Though there’s a lot left to learn, initial findings are busting some myths about how love among many works.

Myth #1: Poly people are unsatisfied

When someone goes outside a relationship looking for companionship or sex, it’s natural to assume there’s something missing from their romance. But that doesn’t appear to be the case for polyamorous individuals.

Melissa Mitchell, a graduate student in psychology at the University of Georgia, conducted research while at Simon Frasier University in Canada on 1,093 polyamorous individuals. The participants were asked to list a primary partner and a secondary partner (more on that later), and they averaged nine years together with their primary and about two-and-a-half years with their secondary.

Mitchell and her colleagues surveyed their participants about how satisfied and fulfilled they felt in their relationships. They found that people were more satisfied with, felt more close to and more supported by their primary partner, suggesting that their desire for a secondary partner had little to do with dissatisfaction in the relationship. And satisfaction with an outside partner didn’t hurt the primary relationship. [6 Scientific Tips for a Successful Marriage]

“Polyamorous relationships are relatively independent of one another,” Mitchell said in January at the annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in New Orleans. “We tend to assume in our culture that if you have your needs met outside your relationship, some kind of detrimental effect is going to result, and that’s not what we find here.”

Read More: http://www.livescience.com/27125-5-myths-about-polyamory.html

 

BetterSex.com Erotic Fiction Contest $4,000 in Prizes

Enter your fictional story on one of the top 10 female fantasies to win one of several prizes. Detailed information below:

Grand Prize

Winning story will receive $750 cash.

2nd Prize

2nd place story will receive $500 cash.

3rd Prize

3rd place story will receive $250 cash.

Contest Instructions

Copy and paste your 3,000 word or less story on one of the top 10 female fantasies in the space provided. Additionally, please email your 500 word summary of your story with the subject line as the title of the story to erotic.fiction.entry {at} gmail.com. Top 10 female fantasies are in no particular order: Sex with a stranger, Dominating a man, Being submissive to a man, Threesome with another man, Threesome with another woman, Voyeurism, Exhibitionism, Erotic dancing/stripping, Role playing, Sex in a public place.

Prize EligibilityOnly persons residing in Canada and United States who are at least 18 years of age can enter.Contest StartsMay 01, 2013 @ 12:01 am (EDT)Contest EndsMay 31, 2013 @ 11:59 am (EDT)Need more Details?Read the Official Rules