Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

Two weeks ago, I wrote an article called “Let’s Talk About Sex (and Double-Standards)” where I talked about the differing attitudes towards men and women when it came to sex. I had planned on leaving it at that, but then I found this.

The article linked above is a piece on feminist website Jezebel about the now-infamous Belle Knox, aka the “Duke Porn Star”. For those who don’t know, Knox is a college student attending Duke University in the United States and who was recently revealed to be making money by starring in porn films.

Once her real name was leaked by a classmate, the internet did what it does best: it tore her apart. Knox has had the names and addresses of her family posted online, students have threatened to throw garbage at her and – because this is the internet – Knox has received a flood of threats of violence, rape and death. Why does this sound familiar?

melissa

anita

Oh yeah

While the story is getting a bit old now, it’s message is still relevant. The reaction to Belle Knox is the perfect example of the restrictive and dangerous double-standards that society holds for men and women in regards to sex. It is hypocrisy at its finest.

The United States of America is one of the greatest consumers of pornography in the world, with the “college” category falling into the Top 3 Most Searched category according to PornHub.

The idea of a bright-eyed, sexually curious college student is clearly a popular fantasy among men. Why then the violent reaction when confronted by this fantasy in real life?

Knox sums it up perfectly in an interview she gave to The Cut. My favourite quote has to be: “I love how the same people who are shaming me are the same people who are jacking off to me.”

In that one line, Knox perfectly sums up modern society’s view of women. I’ve mentioned Jean Kilbourne’s documentary Killing Us Softly before and I’d like to bring it up again.

In her lecture, Kilbourne says that women these days are expected to be what she calls “Experienced Virgins”: that is, women are expected to be beautiful and overtly sexual, but must (somehow) retain their innocence and purity. “If you’re young and beautiful,” says Kilbourne, “then you have no sexuality.”

Belle Knox is just another victim of society’s moral hypocrisy. Her crime wasn’t that she was a porn star, it was that she dared to use and enjoy her sexuality.

Advertisements