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KayleeSaeihr

"Anarchist Politics of women choosing asexuality"

10 posts in this topic

A friend linked me to a research paper about asexuality and how it affects politics in an anarchic way (positive), but it talks about asexuality and other sexual identities as a choice, not inherent. I thought I'd link it here for everyone to peruse and comment on.

Google Docs .pdf

Thoughts?

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This looks interesting because it's basically a description of "political asexuality", like some radical feminists of the '60s/'70s promoted "political lesbianism". Like:

When women choose asexuality, rather than simply being asexual as con-

sequence of their ‘fixed’ psychological makeup, it challenges ideas about identity

and institutions.

Although I would argue that "being" asexual is not exactly comfy with the status quo, either.

That the author acknowledges asexuality as a sexual orientation, but seems to quickly dismiss that as unimportant, doesn't sit right with me. While she's obviously trying to make asexuality as a political "choice" more visible, she ignores the fact that you can easily be "asexual by orientation" and still hold radical feminist or anarchist views.

(Also I can't believe that she actually says "asexuality has risen in numbers recently". Because we've had studies of the asexual population for how many centuries now? :blink: )

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She's confusing asexuality with "permanent" celibacy (permanently refusing sex), so the whole article is just BS. Not to mention that no orientation--heterosexuality, homosexuality, asexuality--is a conscious political choice, it's just who we are.

The article does do one thing, however: it demonstrates pretty thoroughly that the author is not asexual.

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Hi all. I don't post often here but came across this article in one of my political networks and thought it might spark some discussion. I will reserve my immediate response to the article until folks have a chance to read it, but am very curious about the great asexual community's response. This would most likely interest those who are interested in radical politics and feminism, but seeing as asexuality is being represented in a journal of sexualities by this author, I thought others might appreciate a chance to have a look at it. Let me know if you have trouble with the link.

Radical refusals: On the anarchist politics of women choosing asexuality

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I couldn't get the article past page 453 to load. From what I could read...

The funny thing is, they differentiate correctly between celibacy and asexuality. But then they go on to treat asexuality as if it were celibacy. They don't seem to take into account the fact that asexuality is not something that you can choose, and that the average sexual woman DOES need sex to be happy.

They're right that going without sex doesn't cause women to be shriveled and bitter, and that you can live a happy life without it. But for most people, sex and romantic love go together, and most people want both of those. No one is going to give that up for the sake of making a political statement.

If you're naturally asexual or aromantic, you can easily give those up...but we are very rare.

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Hi all. I don't post often here but came across this article in one of my political networks and thought it might spark some discussion. I will reserve my immediate response to the article until folks have a chance to read it, but am very curious about the great asexual community's response. This would most likely interest those who are interested in radical politics and feminism, but seeing as asexuality is being represented in a journal of sexualities by this author, I thought others might appreciate a chance to have a look at it. Let me know if you have trouble with the link.

Radical refusals: On the anarchist politics of women choosing asexuality

Strangebird, someone's already posted this article in another thread and is getting responses.

Mod -- could these threads be combined?

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The funny thing is, they differentiate correctly between celibacy and asexuality. But then they go on to treat asexuality as if it were celibacy. They don't seem to take into account the fact that asexuality is not something that you can choose, and that the average sexual woman DOES need sex to be happy.

I totally agree. Sorry you couldn't get the article to load. If anyone would like the .pdf copy feel free to pm me your email address and I will pass it on. I was personally offended by what I perceive to be the author's confusing use of terminology.

I am a complicated asexual as I have had and have enjoyed sex. I could possibly have and enjoy sex in future, I don't know. I am, however, asexual. My asexuality is not a choice, I am simply not sexually attracted to other people and never have been. My visceral reaction was that asexual people can no more 'choose' asexuality to make a political statement than homo or hetero folks can 'choose' a sexual orientation.

I had asked someone else to post it, I didn't realise they had. Would appreciate a link or combining as well, sorry for the double post.

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The article does do one thing, however: it demonstrates pretty thoroughly that the author is not asexual.

I couldn't agree more. Sorry for double posting, I didn't realise Kaylee had already posted this. :cake:

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She's confusing asexuality with "permanent" celibacy (permanently refusing sex), so the whole article is just BS. Not to mention that no orientation--heterosexuality, homosexuality, asexuality--is a conscious political choice, it's just who we are.

Agreed. I'm a radical feminist, and before I knew that asexuality existed as an orientation, I used to identify as 'politically celibate,' deriving it from the idea of political lesbianism. I realize now that I was coming from a place of extreme heteronormativity with that - I knew I wasn't a lesbian, and I also knew I didn't want to have sex with men, so I assumed I was 'default' hetero but celibate because my feminist ethics meant a sexual relationship with a man wasn't an option.

It took a while for me to admit that, gender politics aside, I just wasn't interested in sex. Or romance, for that matter. I'm not a sexual woman choosing celibacy, I'm just double-A. :) But there was a *lot* of heteronormative cultural conditioning to get past for me to reach that point, and I think that's why the author is conflating celibacy (a choice) with asexuality (an orientation). There's plenty of room for both in the feminist movement!

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