I write often how language keep the prostituted class sub-human. In this post, I will write language of our allies that either on purpose or with ignorance keeps us sub-human.
This is hard to write, for many who use this language would imagine they fully aware of how to speak to the prostituted class. But many allies do not speak with the prostituted class as equals – but they speak for us for they keep us in the victim-role, so unable to speak our own truths without their interpretations; they speak through us,only using our words as examples or our lives as statistics; and they speak over us, seeming to speak of the prostituted but never seeing our human face.
Language has always been used to destroy the prostituted class, and when our allies are part of that destruction, it cuts deep to the bone.
Your words are silencing us, your words are shattering our hearts – your words remind us the prostituted are the bottom of bottom, and should remain there.
Language round anti-porn work is all about them and us – them being the women inside porn, us being “real” women who may be harmed by porn.
I sit in rooms listening to anti-porn debates, and all too often as a woman/girl who was made into porn or had porn poured into me as a prostitute – I know my life, my feelings and my rage is invisible.
It is the language of the porn-world and the real world; the language where the collateral damage done women outside the making of porn is the most vital issue; the language of distance and detachment from the realities of the prostituted.
When I hear the expression “collateral damage” used in the context of the sex trade – I feel despair hit my heart and bile go into my throat.
It is used say the “real damage” of porn is that some men who consume porn may copy the porn into the bodies of their partners.
This of course happens – and yes, it is terrible. But if it the only reason to be anti-porn, then you are abandoning the prostituted class.
To say that, is to say the violence done to women in porn is fake or not that important – it is to imply that women in porn have “chosen” their lifestyle, so with regret it could be their own fault.
To speak in the language of collateral damage is to speak in the language of innocent victims and non-innocent victims.
In the context of war, collateral damage is innocent civilians, whilst soldiers are guilty and must have chosen their lifestyle. Their suffering is not made equal, and speak of collateral damage and you are automatically judging those who you classed as non-innocent victims.
That is how it sounds to exited women – we cannot be innocent, we are not allowed to be “real” victims.
No, women in porn must be made the Other, made women who are unreachable, women who cannot be empathised with.
They must be women who can named as plastic women, women who are just acting, women who have a different attitude to pain and humiliation.
They must be women other women can feel a void between them and us – they must never be known or seen as real.
To see porn inside those women as women – is to feel, see, hear and know it is real pain, it is real torture, it is real degradation – and it really kills all the life-force inside women in porn.
To know that with a deep clearness, is to know that it is worse for women inside porn than women outside porn who are abused by copying porn into their bodies.
Women inside porn have violence, usually extreme sexual torture repeated into their bodies thousands of times.
In a shoot, the violent sex is repeated over and over and over.
It is repeated to get the right angle to show the degradation; it is repeated coz the light is not right; it is repeated because she is not smiling enough; it is repeated to make sure her pain is clear and visible; it is repeated just to make sure she knows she is the bottom of the bottom.
It is repeated pain and degradation done in a mechanical way. She is never a human, just a fuck-machine that make the right noises and is never human enough to be truly damaged.
In this view, the real violence is when porn is poured into the bodies of women and girls outside the sex trade.
Gang-rape only counts if it happens to women and girls not classed and are the role of the whore.
That is why is a deep shock if a non-prostituted woman is gang-raped walking home; but it is just entertainment to view gang-rape on a porn DVD or in the computer. That is why we are outraged if teenage girls are gang-raped on a housing estate; but ignore the flats, hotels and brothels where under-aged prostitutes are gang-raped on a routine basic.
There is general outrage that sexual practices from porn – say double anal, deep-throating, arse-to-mouth etc – is allowed into the real world. It is seen as degradation and violence when done to non-prostituted women and girls.
But each and every violent sexual act in porn has always been put into the bodies of the prostituted for many centuries, and in nearly every country in the world.
Pain and degradation through sexual torture has always been the norm for the prostituted class – and it really hurts that it is only noticed or counts if it is happening to the non-prostituted.
We are made to know our pain and degradation is of no importance – it just used as example of how low women can go.
Until our allies start speaking constantly of our realities – and speak in a loud and clear voice that we are in a human rights crisis – then it is very hard for the prostituted class to have full trust.