ChoiceWords Blog

Posts Tagged: sex

What is Feminist Porn?

Can porn be feminist? A member of my family, who would be appalled if I mentioned her name on this website, worked for a while in a video store. While there, she took it upon herself to view all the softcore pornography offered in “the back” (such a phrase, such a phrase), arguing that in her day, “women wanted porn for the plot, men want it for everything else.” To her, there was porn for women, porn for men, and the stuff they can’t sell. The Internet has since leveled the digital playing field. Every sexual proclivity can be found and satisfied on the World Wide Web, from such innocuous kinks as threesomes and role-playing to highly illegal activities like child pornography and “crush porn”- where people crush animals for… Read more »

A Review of S.E.X.

When I attended the URGE National Conference in Washington, D.C. this June, one of the things in the goodie bag was the book S.E.X. by Heather Corinna. Naturally, I thought it was appropriate to review it for a blog post. On the cover, the book is described as “the all-you-need-to-know progressive sexuality guide to get you through high school and college.” This couldn’t be more accurate. The book is comprehensive, informative, and incredibly thorough, as well as an easy and quick read—I was able to breeze through it in a couple hours before I went through again and read it slowly to take notes. As with just about any get-to-know-your-body book, S.E.X. has a chapter about the body and how it changes during puberty. Corinna does an excellent job at… Read more »

What are the Politics of Desirability?

“Those of us who stand outside the circle of this society’s definition of acceptable women; those of us who have been forged in the crucibles of difference – those of us who are poor, who are lesbians, who are Black, who are older – know that survival is not an academic skill. It is learning how to stand alone, unpopular and sometimes reviled, and how to make common cause with those others identified as outside the structures in order to define and seek a world in which we can all flourish. It is learning how to take our differences and make them strengths.”  — Audre Lorde Narratives about beauty, intelligence, and kindness have mostly been centralized on white people. Psychological experiments like The Doll Test have shown that from a… Read more »

The problem with Franco’s conversation between his “two sexualities”

Earlier this week I stumbled across an interesting interview with James Franco entitled “The straight James Franco talks to the gay James Franco.”  The title alone was enough to get me to click on the article and after reading the piece I was left with a lot of frustration to say the least. Franco was asked to do the interview by a relatively new magazine called FourTwoNine which according to the Kickstarter campaign that helped fund it in 2013, is magazine that covers “the latest news and innovations in technology, entertainment, design, media and politics, and showcases how LGBT people are living in the context of the larger world.” Sounds promising enough, but being that Franco’s article was the first I’d ever heard of the publication and considering how dissatisfied it left me I’m not feeling too… Read more »

Podcasts for Reproductive Justice Activists

Radio is one of my favorite ways of hearing peoples stories. Sound can be a beautiful and intimate medium, allowing you to free up your other senses to do work, make art, or just chill while you are listening. RH Reality Check Possibly the most relevant podcast to this blog, Reality Cast, released by RH Reality Check covers everything related to reproductive health. From politics to media, RH Reality Check’s podcast discusses reproductive justice and also features links to other podcasts like this episode of Making Contact that talks about abortion stigma and the ways in which pop culture is shaped by discussions of abortion. The Heart The Heart is a podcast about all different types of amazing love stories. Released in partnership with sound story consortium, Radiotopia, The Heart… Read more »

Let’s Fix the Binary Problem with Dating Apps

Recently, I’ve noticed a rising trend in the use of dating apps on my campus. The most popular of these is Tinder, which seems to have many problems associated with its binary-only friendly structure. Although Tinder allows for its users to open their sexual preferences to both “men and women,” there are no ways for queer or non-binary people to identify as anything other than a man or woman. In the spirit of sex-positivity and gender equity, I’ve compiled a list of dating apps that are non-binary or have been created by women. Although these apps don’t seem to have nearly as many users as Tinder, they written about are far less and hopefully by spreading the word about their existence they will grow! Thurst is a brand new dating… Read more »

RJ Tech Talk: Male Contraceptive Pill

Hooray! Male birth control will be available by 2017. What is male birth control? The Parsemus Foundation, a company that works on making healthcare affordable, is working on developing Valgasel: a pill made for men that will prevent contraception from happening. Luckily for you, guys, this is not a hormonal method! It targets a physical mechanism that targets the sperms little tiny tails and stops them from swimming. Also, the process if reversible and sperm will completely viable once again. As with any form of contraceptive pill, a barrier method will also be required to prevent transferring STIs between partners. What happens inside of bodies that take Valgasel? When sperm are created and stored in the testis (aka balls), and when they make there way from their storage center to exit… Read more »

RJ Tech Talk: Egg Freezing

As new technology is being developed for reproductive health, many questions come up as to how each product can fit into the framework justice. Technology’s impact on gender, sexuality, and reproductive choices has vastly expanded over the past fifty years. I’ve chosen to explain oocyte cryopreservation, or egg freezing, one tech product I’ve been seeing in the media a lot and provide links to other sources that talk about its use within reproductive justice, controversial or not. Oocyte cryopreservation, also known as egg freezing, is a procedure where a woman’s oocytes (eggs) are extracted, frozen, and the preserved. The eggs can be thawed later on when the person wants to become pregnant, transferred after fertilization to the uterus as embryos. Recently, egg freezing has been in the news because Facebook… Read more »

The Kids Will Be All Right

Earlier this week, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) approved for the first time the use of long-acting contraceptive methods (LARCs) as the first recommended choice for teens. These devices, the intrauterine device (IUD) and the implant, offer the best of protection against unwanted pregnancies for at least three and up to twelve years (ten FDA-approved). This is especially good news considering that Skyla, the newest IUD on the market, was designed explicitly for young people and/or those who haven’t given birth.  Two of the biggest reasons why it’s been difficult for those groups to find a gynecologist who would be willing to prescribe them IUDs were the slight risk of expulsion from the uterus before pregnancy has occurred, it was something that doctors used to discourage or outright deny… Read more »

College students need sex ed, too

I would guess that most students who arrive on a college campus as freshman did not receive comprehensive sex education in middle or high school. While most of us learned about sexually-transmitted infections in the classroom, it’s also the case that for most of us, our sex education was either abstinence-only or at least elevated abstinence from sex as the universal best choice. There are lots of other numbers to throw around: about a third of people in their late teens don’t receive any formal education about birth control, and even if they do, only a fourth of them know anything substantial about the Pill. In a standard high school sex ed course  ̶  if you get one at all, and considering that less than half of all states mandate… Read more »