Margaret Morse on Fri, 17 Feb 2012 09:52:48 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> Sex Work and Consent at @transmediale

Dear Flick,

Nice of you to follow up on Hearts of Men. I see the era of
sexual revolution you find liberating for men--as it probably
was--problematic for women who were often left with responsibility for
the care, parenting and most of the financial support for the children
left behind. It was true that many wives were getting fed up with the
suburbs and an isolated life raising children by themselves-see Betty
Friedan's Feminine Mystique--though at least they had a provider in
the working man who did actually have a sacrificial role in bringing
home the bacon. However, it wasn't easy for women to become sole or
major providers when women were openly and explicitly barred from many
kinds of professions and positions in the business world at the time.
A significant number of women I knew were raising children in poverty,
working however they could and studying for some kind of profession. I
think it would be interesting to explore a child's perspective of this

Raising children was considered a primary source of meaning in life;
wild sex was kept in the margins. Suddenly it was OK for a middle
or working class man to devote himself to the pursuit of wild sex
(like wild flowers, freely picked and they raise themselves), not
unlike the rou?s and playboys I read about the turn of the century
Viennese writer Schnitzler, but without coffee houses and publishing
and armies of prostitutes. Maybe more provided women found time for
wild sex and even found rich husbands doing it, as I remember reading
in Diane Middlebrook. I have outlined my own jaundiced experience of
this period in one of my posts in regard to Kittler's passing. I was
glad when it was over. Or maybe it has never ended, though I hope that
I and we have learned something in the meantime. That is what I would
call progress.

The Moral Majority apparently has at least a much wild sex as
professed playboys. (Has any man call himself a playboy since Hefner
and Porfirio Rubirosa?) Your comment about sexual exploitation
assumes that the sex worker keeps both the money and the pleasure.
When that is the case, then Alessandra can step in and take over from
there. I would note that the assumptions of this conversation are
heterosexual and based in a world prior to the augmented reality we
live in. I am bored with the old reality. I begin to fade when I read
about pseudo-feminists or the word feminist used like a pejorative
and judgmental stick. However, I am surprised and impressed that you
read or might scan Ehrenreich. I find Ehrenreich a heroic writer and
sociologist per se.

Best wishes,

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