Fair play in the dominance game

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Sociologist and sex educator Barbara Rothmüller this time on how young men misunderstand BDSM culture.

What happens when a group of young men watch ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ together? Little good. For example, after the film, Matteo and Omar get the impression that ‘women like it best’ when they are humiliated and dominated. The portrayal of the toxic relationship between Anastasia and Christian harms the understanding of sexuality at least as much as it excites: it eroticizes humiliation and blurs the thin line between consensual domination games and sexual violence.

Since the adult drama was released in 2015, the myths surrounding sadomasochism have hardly diminished. While “Fifty Shades of Grey” was an incredible commercial success despite bad reviews, follow-up projects such as the Netflix series Bonding, which was filmed after just two seasons, flopped.

Until ten years ago, little was known about BDSM practices. The acronym stands for a group of sexual activities in which partners engage in consensual bondage, pleasure pain, submission or dominance. As long as no one is harmed and everyone involved enjoys it, BDSM is considered a sexual preference, among other things. However, current research shows that BDSM is less about kinky private sex in the bedroom and more like kayaking or mountain climbing: a serious recreational activity that often requires a lot of practice, time and money and social networking.

BDSM is a culture of its own. There are training seminars where BDSM techniques and communication in dominance games are taught. BDSM communities also share a clear behavioral ethos that focuses on consensus. You can’t say that about most media representations.

Young men in particular often try to compensate for their insecurity with exaggerated dominance. That is a problem. Young women report that men regularly do not accept their no. Sexual harassment has nothing to do with consensual domination games. It would be important to bring some clarity here so that young viewers like Matteo, Omar and their friends have no doubt that women don’t find humiliation and domination without consent sexy.

Read more columns HERE!

Source: Krone

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