There are several issues raised in an article on a blog called “DLCS Management” (https://dlcsmanagement.wordpress.com/2019/07/31/about-bras-the-male-gaze-and-unwanted-comments/) that I would like to address from a hominist perspective; that is, from a critique of sexism, avoiding the ideological obscurantism and apologetics of feminism.
This, of course, is not to imply that the woman herself is a feminist, merely that she raises issues that, in the style of occasional commentary, as on the death of public figure, are relevant to a hominist critique of sexism.
One of the most important points raised by a hominist critique of sexism is that the bra is itself an ideological invention, almost certainly to enhance a woman’s erotic sexuality. That is certainly how it’s used by women.
In fact, Nature obviously intended the breasts to sag. This was specifically to eliminate primiparous or postpubertal women from the gene pool as soon as possible.
In this way, a younger generation of males could make a more robust biological selection. Thus the bra is inherently contra naturam: against Nature.
Many women who still look “sexy” in their late 20s and even later would hardly look reproductively fit without a bra. That’s how Nature intended.
It must be noted that hominism fully supports topless exposure in women. But for typically hominist reasons.
The hominist goal is to desensitize men to the female breasts. In this way, as happens in tribal cultures, men will be raised to be indifferent towards the breasts, or other female body parts.
Thus breasts (or other female body parts) lose their erotic, thus commodity, value. I have addressed these issues prolifically in this blog.
Indeed, just recently there was an allegation made against an auto mechanic that he offered to discount a woman’s cost if she would lift up her blouse.
Now, most feminists would see that as an issue of feminism and the oppression of women. But the hominist asks, how have women assumed so much sexual power over men that men would risk their jobs, and even arrest, just to see a mammary gland that men in a tribal society would show no erotic interest in whatsoever.
I doubt if anyone will ever see a man in a tribal culture ogling women, either due to their breasts or due to steatopygic butts that would put our female reality stars to shame.
We take the “erotic” for granted in Western or other civilized (that is, “writing”) cultures, as far back as ancient Egypt. But in fact, the erotic is not at all natural. It’s a cultural invention.
Where hominism differs from feminism is that women deny the benefits, remunerative and psychosexual, that they receive from the eroticization of their bodies. Yet they benefit in numerous ways. All remunerative sex exchanges that favor women are based on treating female body parts like erotic fetishes.
The hypocrisy of feminists is that they want it both ways. Yet women benefit economically and psychosexually from the cultural invention and indoctrination of the female erotic.
The female body is valorized through the male gaze. The male body, on the other hand, is marginalized, demonized, and even criminalized.
A woman who exposes herself is sexy. A man who exposes himself is a degenerate, pervert, and criminalized as an exhibitionist.
Even the word “exhibitionist” changes meaning when applied to a woman or to a man. When applied to a woman, at worst it connotes a woman strutting her stuff; one who is vain, narcissistic, or who “flaunts” her “assets,” etc. When applied to a man, it denotes a clinical perversion, and even a mental disorder.
In this way, femininity is normalized and masculinity is demonized. But no one has ever asked the fundamental question: why aren’t women as excited seeing the male body as the male is by seeing the female body? Yet that should indeed be the case, if the sexes were, in fact, equal, as feminists claim, in their own obscurantist way.
In some cultures, apparently it was considered normal for a man to expose himself in order to excite a woman to sex. Today, only women are allowed that privilege.
Yet women continue to position women as the passive objects of the male gaze. In fact, it is men who are the passive subject of the woman’s erotic lab experiment to test the extent of her powers.
Thus women, specifically feminists, continue to send equivocal, and even polysemous, messages. In these conflicting messages, which are almost typical of the “double-bind” knots that writers such as Gregory Bateson and R.D. Laing argued were at the root of later schizophrenia, women sexualize their bodies, presumably wanting sexual responses from men, but they also claim offense when represented as “sex objects.”
The writer herself cannot see how she assumes contrary positions in a single sentence:
“I recently came to the realisation that I only wear bras … (to prevent) [the] male gaze OR when I want my boobs to look bigger when I wear a certain dress.” [Emphasis in original.]
SO WHAT DO WOMEN WANT? Was Will das Weib, as Freud asked?
Do women want men to look, or not to look? Or is a man to look only when the woman “thinks” sexy thoughts?
It reminds me of Cary Grant’s humorous line in “North by Northwest” when he feels “heavyish”: “Put a note on my desk in the morning: THINK THIN.”
Men are knotted in sexual double binds. They are supposed to be sexually excited by women, who dress precisely to sexually excite men. Indeed, that’s the very gender-coercive definition of “masculinity.” Yet men are also humiliated, or derogated, for responding in that way.
If men don’t sexually respond in a “gender appropriate” manner, they’re not real men, as a prostitute once said of the painter Edgar Degas. If they do respond, they are not real men, now in a contradictory sense of the word “real.” That is, a “real” man doesn’t treat a woman as a sex object.
Keep in mind, sexual passivity in women is inherently coercive. It’s coercive in the sense that men really have no choice but to respond in a gender-appropriate way to women who show no interest in them.
That is, men are “coerced” to make the first move. This in turn involves a constant predatory surveillance of woen.
Because men learn early in life that women who show no interest in them may or may not be interested in them. Yet men know that women will never make the first sexual move.
Thus, it’s a Hobson’s Choice. But that is no choice at all, assuming the man does not wish to open a motel on an abandoned highway.
Thus I’m always amused when feminists flatter themselves with the bogus biological argument that “men can’t control themselves.” The hominist argument is precisely that men CAN control themselves.
But they are taught to respond in a gender-appropriate manner to a sexually passive woman, whether she presents as indifferent, hostile, busy, professional, committed, uncertain, or even sleeping, as in famous fairy tales, obviously a representation of women’s sexual dormancy.
Hominism calls this “The Sleeping Beauty Syndrome.” That is, the woman’s dormant libido, or sexual interest in the man, must first be awakened by the man’s transgressive action, symbolized in fairy tales (“Snow White,” “Sleeping Beauty”) by a kiss while the woman sleeps.
To say a man, under those terms, cannot control himself is like saying a dog cannot control himself for chasing a Frisbee its owner has just thrown. Perhaps an even better analogy is it’s like saying a competent chess player “just can’t control himself” by moving his king out of a checked position.
That’s not being unable to control oneself. It’s precisely the opposite, based on the rules of Chess. It’s being able to control oneself, but to act in a game-appropriate manner.
This may seem like a semantic argument. But it is integral to a heuristic hominism that wants to bypass biological determinism in both men and women.
After all, if women are not biologically determined to be housewives and mothers, then men are not biologically determined to suffer a sexual seizure every time a woman exposes her breast or legs.
Indeed, one of the goals of a radical hominism is precisely to challenge the cultural norm of female sexual beauty. Clearly other cultures thought that men were greater paradigms of beauty and of sexuality than women, as we know from ancient Greek art, Renaissance art, Persian literature such as “The Arabian Nights,” and Shakespeare’s sonnets (his most famous sonnet, #18, was addressed to a man).
But until we challenge that paradigm of female beauty as the norm, men are in a double bind. They must act in a gender-appropriate manner to be “masculine.” But they must not act in a gender-appropriate manner to be decent men.
We find this double bind, for example, when women wish to publicly nurse. The feminist mother, some of whom may have paid off their medical or grocery bills jiggling their breasts in sleazy strip joints, nonetheless hypocritically protests that the breast is a natural object when men leer at her.
It’s true, the breast is inherently a natural object. But women greatly benefit from making it an erotic object. So women can’t have it both ways.
Women can’t spend millions of dollars on silicone implants in order to pose in racy photos on social media, or in girlie magazines, or to gyrate in bars and strip joints to pay the rent or college tuition, and yet, in the same breath, protest that the breast is a natural mammary gland and it’s only sexist men that have sexualized it!
I have analyzed the erotic in terms of the teasing, partial exposure of female body parts. The entire naked anatomy cannot be erotic, but merely sexual.
Thus, in order for the body, or its body parts, to excite erotic cathexis in men, the body parts must be only teasingly, or otherwise transgressively, exposed.
The difference is cogently shown in Edouard Manet’s two scandalous paintings of 1863, “Luncheon on the Grass” and “Olympia.”
Why did these paintings cause a scandal? Nudity was a commonplace in classical art.
Of course, in classical art the figures were mythological. But doubtless the primary difference was, in classical art all figures in the paintings were naked. In these paintings, Manet transgressively contrasted a fully naked woman against, in one case, two fully clothed men, and in the other case, a fully clothed black maidservant.
In the latter case the sense of a transgressive nudity, therefore erotic nudity, is heightened by the contrast of the white skin of the woman and the black skin of the maid, as well as by the choker around the woman’s neck, the last remnant of clothing, as if she had carelessly disrobed. Like the collar around a kitten’s neck, we are made, by contrast, even more aware of the woman’s naked anatomy.
The transgressive is thus the very essence of the erotic. That is why there is a difference between “being” topless and “going” topless.
The language itself is suggestive. “Being” topless does not imply transgression, hence is not suggestively erotic. Men and women in tribal cultures are topless.
“Going” topless implies a temporary removal of socially mandated clothing for the purpose of sexual arousal or excitatory response. In short, the exposure is prurient, and intended to be so.
Thus, a topless club only has erotic attraction precisely because the rest of society requires that breasts be covered up. No man would look twice at a woman’s breasts if men were raised in a culture where all women were naked from birth.
That’s why I am certain that, if put to a vote tomorrow, the great majority of women would vote to keep the breasts covered. Because only by a teasing exposure of them, as in a photo of Jay-Z glaring at Beyonce’s teasingly exposed cleavage, can the erotic thrive.
In this way, also, flourishes the commodification of women’s bodies. By this means, women benefit remuneratively, in one form or another, as dates, mistresses, concubines, mile-high sex flight attendants, paid escorts, nude masseuses, young wives of old rich men, etc.
There’s a superb exchange in the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, “The King and I” where the king rebukes Anna for too much exposure. Anna protests that the king’s ladies are also exposed:
“What is so extraordinary about bare shoulders?” Anna protests. “Your own ladies. …”
“Ah, yes, but it’s different, because of not wearing so many covering ups on other parts of body. … And therefore is different.”
As the great French movie critic, Andre Bazin wrote of the iconic subway scene in “The Seven Year Itch”: only in a repressed sexual culture could an erotic scene like that be possible.
The blogger herself concedes contrary points of view:
“I want my boobs to look bigger when I wear a certain dress”!
In other words, sometimes a woman wants her boobs to be looked at, and sometimes she’s offended when she’s looked at. Unfortunately, it’s up to the man to figure out when. This is typical of the equivocal or polysemous messages that women send men all the time.
In an overlooked part of the Cosby deposition, Cosby says that he knows how to “read” women.
For hominism, the burden placed on men to have to read women is where all the problems start. Let’s require women to read men for a change.
The writer continues:
“In my eyes I did not dress sexy or provocative (and what if I did?) and yet there were 3 (!!!!) men during a 2 hour walk that felt the need to comment on my boobs. This really pissed me off.”
Whether this writer is a feminist or not, her comment is typical of feminism in several ways. First we note its reduction of all testable reality to women’s “feelings.”
Hence the growing feminist emotive lexicon; including words such as “appalled,” “offended,” “outraged,” “insulted,” “felt humiliated,” “mortified,” etc. We can hereby include the word “pissed” in that lexicon.
Yet reality is not based on how one feels. A child feels bored watching Verdi’s “Il Trovatore.” But that’s hardly an empirical, or aesthetic, comment on the opera.
Many feel bored watching a baseball game, compared to a football game. Motorists are offended when police stop them for being five miles over the limit. That doesn’t mean the police acted improperly.
A first-time offender is mortified having his arrest photo taken. On the other hand, many hardened criminals are not offended, and do not feel mortified, knowing that they beat an 80 year old woman half to death.
“In my eyes” is another characteristic phrase of feminism. In fact those words may underpine the entire feminist ideology, whether this blogger is feminist or not. There’s even an American feminist series called “Through a Woman’s Eyes.”
Now the whole point of hominism is no longer to see “through a woman’s eyes.” We as hominists must no longer think inside the feminist box.
For feminism has historically lacked an emprical adequation of terms. “Sexism” or “misogyny” is whatever offends women. Thus in order to genuinely philosophize about sexism, we must no longer be trapped inside the feminist episteme.
As the French philosopher, Michel Foucault wrote, every episteme is an ideological knowledge-power apparatus. It controls what passes for legitimate “knowledge,” as well as what is excluded as legitimate “knowledge.”
In this way, feminism weaponizes all terms related to sexism. The use of these words thus no longer reflect an empirical reality, but rather what a woman “feels” about an empirical reality, seen “through a woman’s eyes.”
Regarding the comment, “I did not dress sexy or provocative,” my entire commentary addresses that issue. All exposure of the female body in our culture is erotic, regardless of intent.
Not because of some evil “patriarchy” or lascivious sexist men. But because the erotic is built into the gendering of the sexes as passive feminine and active masculine, as sexual Object and sexual Voyeur.
Whether this or that woman thrives on the erotic or not is irrelevant. Yet most do.
That’s why the comment that some feminists make, “I was fully covered up and still I was sexualized,” says nothing about the phenomenology of the erotic in our culture.
The erotic is not based on how much exposure a woman shows. It’s true, however, that exposure heightens the erotic excitation. But is not a necessary condition of it.
In the same way, $10,000 on an old man heightens the cupidity of a mugger. Yet even $10 would be sufficent, or no money at all.
A mugger sees all pedestrians as a source of money, based on the commonplace that all people have money. In the same way, men see all women as a source of erotic sex, based on how most women behave.
After all, every stripper begins her sex tease fully dressed. It is that fully dressed woman that the guy sees on the subway. Mainly due to the stripper he paid for the night before, he wants to see the straphanger remove her clothes, as the stripper predictably did the evening before.
It has been said, wittily, that a woman cannot be partly pregnant. In the same way, women cannot be partly, or sometimes, erotic. Either they are, or they aren’t.
Typically, when men do present as erotic, usually to a homosexual subculture, they do not pretend a public profile as lawyers, teachers, doctors, news anchors, senators, or scientists. Yet women do.
Now I present a parable. I call it The Parable of the Display Slice of Cake.
Behind a bakery window is a sliced cake, with all the rich, dark chocolate and creamy insides exposed. Next to the window are plain brown boxes in which the cakes are placed for sale.
Now it is not the plain brown box that tantalized the customer’s gustatory sense. It’s the previously exposed slice of cake in the window that he sees when he views the plain box.
The man who sees some MTV pop diva strut on stage in the video at home will see the demurely dressed nurse on the subway sexually gyrating, the same way that the pop diva did in the video. Yet how many feminists condemn these pop divas, some of whom are actually identified as feminist?
Qui tact, consentir videtur. Who is silent, consents to what she sees.
The writer continues:
“In my head I replied to the 3 men: ‘Did I share them with you? Did you deserve the right to speak about my breasts? Did I ask your opinion?’”
But women, as a gender, cannot provocatively eroticize their bodies when they feel like it, make billions of dollars annually off of remunerative sex exchanges with men, and then one woman individually protest that she is not an erotic object. It doesn’t work like that. This position is especially ironic in the city of Amsterdam, where sex is routinely a commodity that men pay for.
A guard dog trained to bite burglars will indiscriminately bite a police officer chasing the burglar. The dog is taught the difference between family and strangers, but not the difference between strangers.
Men are raised to be sexually excited by women. They are not raised to tell the difference between women who want to excite men and those who do not, or when they do or when they do not.
Thus the ulterior goal of a radical hominism is completely to abolish the erotic in society. In this way, men will no longer receive knotted, contradictory, messages. Yet this, women refuse to do.
Our writer continues:
“I had the feeling these men were not necessarily evil, but they just don’t know any better.”
No. They knew better.
They hear stories of how their buddies got that cute woman in hot pants on his arm by impudently confronting her on the street. There’s even a passage in a feminist novel where the heroine, Isadora Wing, has her butt squeezed by a total stranger.
Was she mortified? Appalled? Pissed? Outraged? Offended? Humiliated?
Not at all. The first-person narrator (i.e. the woman herself) describes it as “a playful squeeze.” Moreover, it’s the start of a later sexual tryst.
Thus, when is a man supposed to know when a woman is inviting him to make a sexually transgressive move, and when is he supposed to know that it’s “impolite shit” to do so?
There is one especially telling line at one point in the woman’s article:
“If any of the men would have simply greeted me, said hello, or started a respectful conversation, I would have answered them.”
Does the reader see the double standard there? Why should the man have to make the first move?
Why do men always have to play the active role? And how “active” should he get?
Sometimes a squeeze of the butt does the trick, and leads straight to the bedroom. But sometimes it outrages the woman, and leads straight to the police precinct.
In part 3 of a youtube video, “Murdered Innocence” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9XcvCxnXjo) about the affair between director Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate.
As narrated by production designer and friend, Richard Sylbert,
“Sharon and I had dinner. And she told me about the first night that Roman kissed her. And she said, ‘Well we walked down the street,’ and, and, she was so sweet, so charming about this, ‘and then he stopped me. And you know, he was shorter than I was. So he had to jump up in the air to kiss me. And he knocked me down and landed on top of me.’ That was her description of this romantic. . . .”
John Calley, former Filmways executive continues:
“So he’s lying on this wet sidewalk, kissing her. And she thought it was funny and weird and fun and very strange and Romanesque, as it were. So, and then they saw each other the next day. And by the time we went back, I think she was kind of hooked on Roman.”
See, we NEVER hear of NUMEROUS sexual “transgressive” acts like this as a means of “normal” courtship. Since WOMEN APPROVE. And usually because the male has POWER, STATUS, MONEY, or CELEBRITY.
We ONLY hear of something like this if the woman does NOT approve; whether because the man has no power, status, money, or celebrity or because she’s already in love with someone else with equal power, status, money or celebrity.
But there’s only one way the man can find out in our predatory pursuit pattern that benefits women. He must take the risk.
Now taking the risk, either the man will be “rewarded” with the woman’s sexual “favors,” or he will be accused of harassing her without “consent.” As if women don’t fall in love with men who do it without their consent, as this instance shows.
Now it’s fifty years after Second Wave feminism. Yet women still wait for men to make the first move.
As a peripatetic philosopher, I cannnot count the numerous times I’ve seen a woman reading or sipping coffee, al fresco, with her long bare legs stretched out.
A total stranger walks up to her. Soon, from a distance, as in a silent movie, I can see the woman nodding permission for the man to sit down.
I’ve seen (and heard) the same thing on buses, on trains, while walking the streets. Youtube videos are based on men chatting up women on the streets asking for dates.
Now hominism has postulated an empirical principle of sexism, something feminism has failed to do in centuries. Based on the hominist paradigm, all sexism is based on gender binaries.
These binaries first gender, thus polarize, the sexes (male and female) into a sexually passive femininity and a sexually aggressive masculinity.
One can say that all gender begins with the sexual passivity of the woman. This gendering of woman’s sexuality as passive necessarily polarizes male sexuality as aggressive.
This binary in turn leads to other binaries, of dress, of employment, etc. These in turn require discriminatory practices between the sexes. Thus, for hominism, Gender=Sexism.
Without gender there can be no sexism, just two sexes, male and female, both equals with the same active libido. That’s why Freud’s premise of a single active libido in both men and women is so revolutionary, and has such radical consequences, if taken seriously.
Notice that in the classic definition of feminism, that is, “the belief in the economic, social, and political equality of women,” SEX IS OMITTED. The reason is, women know that sex is where their true power and privileges lie.
That’s why feminism was built on a fraud from the very beginning, comparing male and female social status and income. This fraud allowed feminism to attack all gender binaries EXCEPT THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT and constitutive binary of gendered libido (that is, women as sexually passive and men as sexually aggressive).
Hominism has shown that the real equivalence is between male social status and income, and female SEXUAL status and income.
Feminism proselytized how gender binaries discriminate against women in the workplace. Thus there were “Girl Wanted” and “Girl Friday” ads. There were gendered terms such as “stewardess,” which therefore became “flight attendant,” or “mailman,” which therefore became “mail carrier.”
There was the marital distinction for women as Miss and Mrs, but not for men. Therefore the neologism, Ms., was created.
But how is it possible that feminists saw all these gender binaries, but ignored the two constitutive gender binaries of gendered libido and gendered toilette? Yet no amount of ideological indoctrination will change the fact that women remain sexually passive and they dress in an erotic fashion precisely to compensate for their sexual passivity, whether through the use of lipstick, a bra, a slit dress, high heels or stiletto heels, nylons, mascara, cleavage, bare back, exposed navel, off-the-shoulder dresses, monroes, eye shadow, hot pants, etc.
With typical feminist obscurantism, Meghan Markle is to this day celebrated because, at age 11, she protested a single kitchen ad directed at women. But she has yet to protest the literally tens of thousands of beauty ads directed at women. In fact, she uses those products.
I find the writer’s subsequent comment, “I often feel blessed for being born and having grown up here in this amazingly safe city of Amsterdam,” ironic in view of the fact that Amsterdam has legalized the sex trades and Amsterdam is sometimes called a sex capital. Yet the writer apparently cannot see the connection between the commodification of sex and the sexual objectification of women that she resents.
The writer also apparently cannot see the irony that when women suffer from a physical weakness, they expect the government to compensate, not to reinforce, that weakness, by funding programs to make women stronger, more athletic, or improve their math scores and representations in the sciences.
But when men show physical weaknesses, such as their dependence on women for sex, instead of compensating for that weakness with similar social engineering programs, women exploit that weakness by charging men money for sex.
The blogger’s final comment (again, whether she herself is a feminist or not) is typical of feminist obscurantism, especially in a culture of erotic and commodified sex in which the blogger lives, a commodification of sex that pays the rent for numerous lazy, exploitative, and parasitic females.
“Moms, please educate your sons so in the future our daughters won’t have to deal with this behavior anymore. Please teach your sons to be respectful. Men, please think before you speak. Your words can have effect on a woman.”
Why not, instead, educate our daughters? Or better yet, educate their mothers, who think presenting their five-year-old daughters as pubescents in lipstick and heels, and with polished fingernails and toenails, is somehow “cute.” They’ll grow out of it. Really?
In view of my comments above, why not regender that advice, now as hominist advice to fathers:
Dads, please educate your daughters so in the future our sons won’t have to deal with the provocatively teasing sexual behaviors on the part of women anymore. Please teach your daughters to be respectful of their bodies, if they want men to be respectful of their bodies as well. Women, please think before you dress to fetishize, expose, and eroticize your bodies. Your bodies can have excitatory and sexually polarized effects on men.