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Thursday, February 22, 2007
Hookup culture continued
Wow, that's quite a line from Yglesias, but an even more remarkable one from LSS. Throwing a rock through the window is quite the violent and strangely evocative sexual metaphor.
It's also, I think, very misguided and dated. The image calls to mind the old saw, said by grand dames in '50s movies to women engaging in premarital sex, "Are you going to have him buy the cow, or are you going to keep giving away the milk for free?" That image of sex as the sacred property of the woman is off-putting, to me, but not as off-putting as Stepp's image of sex as a form of lasting damage. (Yes, you can fix a broken window, but Stepp seems to regard it as a scar on the shiny new house, forever to be regretted.)
I must admit that in my conservative -- or perhaps it's romantic -- soul, it worries me to see acts of intimacy conceived of by "the young these days" as, ya know, no big deal. Much has been made of the casual performance of oral sex among teenagers. Caitlin Flanagan wrote a somewhat flippant but concerned article about this, and a blogger named Sara Nelson had a perceptive comment, in the course of a longer discussion about sex: "Yes, her daughter is more likely to [give oral sex] in high school than she was -- but she's also much much more likely to receive it."
Perhaps Stepp would call that mutual prostitution. And a part of me half agrees. But it's certainly not an act of exploitation, as Stepp seems to believe.