A while back, a friend highly recommended Fifty Shades of Grey. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you will have heard about Fifty Shades at least a million times. Perhaps you even read it for yourself.
I can see why there’s been so much hoopla around the book despite it’s horrible, horrible plot and writing. I could devote a whole post on the horrors of the e-mail chains between Anastasia and Christian. Booooring.
But E.L. James pushes the boundaries on the kind of sex that sells — especially the kind of sex that appeals to women.
For too long, it’s been assumed that women don’t want sex for the purposes of “getting off”. We want long-winded relationships, equally long-winded conversations about the future and men who will iron.
So when E.L. James presents with the idea of not just sex for sex but sex with ropes, whips and a “Red Room of Torture”, those of us who have been watching The Notebook, had to look. And we couldn’t turn away.
I feel that Fifty Shades really confronts this issue head on. Is mind-blowing good sex (whatever its form) enough for women? Are you comfortable keeping a man as your sex monkey or will you forever feel like his?
Fifty Shades unapologetically screams “Women love sex” but in its post-coital haze, it quietly asks for all modern women, “But what about love?”
P.S. See The Atlantic’s “The French Are Not Impressed by ‘Cinquante Nuances De Grey.'” for the most eloquent criticism of Fifty Shades.