You are viewing mariness

February 1st, 2004

Sex slaves in the U.S.

So two people this week chose to e-mail me about this NY Times magazine about preteen sex slaves,, the first yelling at me (and, I suspect, a host of other erotica writers) for "making shit like this happen to young girls," and the second from one of my thoughtful readers in Minnesota, who asked me if I had seen the article, and if so, what my thoughts were about it.

My first reaction was to wonder if Stephen King gets the same kind or reaction when people read articles about zombies, but I quashed that. As it happened, I had read the article, thought about linking to it here, and then decided not to, because, despite my continued (although shaking) faith in the New York Times, I had my grave doubts about this particular article. Very grave doubts. As it turns out, a lot of other people are sharing my doubts, including, the Los Angeles Times, numerous bloggers, and now, apparently, the NY Times' public editor. Teaching us the valuable lesson that in journalism, it's probably best not to write a paragraph sounding dangerously like an urban legend, and then immediately follow this up with the legend of the Pied Piper.

My main concern, at this stage, is not that erotica may be causing sex slavery, or that a backlash against sex slavery may create a backlash against erotica -- the two, in my opinion, are not necessarily related. Erotica can be fantasy, or it can be a way for an author to explore the role and meaning of sex in society, and in either case, is not mildly close to the reality of preteen sex slaves. The key problem: an article like this, with its sensationalism, clear factual errors, and unquestioning acceptance of sources, may actually serve to conceal the reality of sex trafficing.

Back to half-hearted watching of Superbowl commercials and full-hearted searching for articles about dolphin tumours.

Feb. 1st, 2004

"Many men have been praised as vividly imaginative on the strength of their profuseness in indifferent drawing or cheap narration: - reports of very poor talk going on in distant orbs, or portraits of Lucifer coming down on his bad errands as a large ugly man with bat's wings and spurts of phosphorescence; or exaggerations of wantonness that seem to reflect life in a diseased dream."

-- George Eliot, Middlemarch


xmas me
Mari Ness

Latest Month

May 2015


Powered by
Designed by Tiffany Chow