"The women of Bikini Kill let guitarist Billy Karren be in their feminist punk band, but only if he's willing to just "do some shit." Being a feminist dude is like that. We may ask you to "do some shit" for the band, but you don't get to be Kathleen Hannah."--@heatherurehere

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Pleasure for Women During Sex Is All About Style

There was an interesting article in the SF Chronicle this past Sunday detailing some claims by Kristen O'Hara that uncircumcised penises help create more pleasure for women during Penis-In-Vagina sex, in part because the foreskin helps to cushion the ridge on the glans of the penis, which can be 'like a harpoon'. Apparently, O'Hara is likely full of crap (according to people like Susie Bright), and her methods aren't (yet?) scientific at all, but anecdotal. I've got no problem with anecdotal evidence, actually, as long as it's not the only evidence one is offering up. It can buttress science or sometimes act as counterexamples to method. But standalone, it often ain't enough.

The most interesting thing about this article, however, is that it was in the Sunday Chronicle, in the Style section, with the headline: "A CUT BELOW: Uncovering the truth about women's pleasure". So, um, if we're really uncovering the truth about women's pleasure here, why is this in Style? Well, clothes are pleasurable, aren't they?



Doug S. said...

Well, playing devil's advocate here, it's written in a style consistent with a less formal section of a newspaper. It's not about a specific event; it's a general description of an ongoing controversy that hasn't gotten much formal media attention. The "Style" section might not have the most appropriate subject heading, but is there a better place to put it?

What is a "style" section, anyway, and why do newspapers have one?

jeff said...

I love devil's advocates, by the way, Doug S. It's a holdover from my days as a philosopher.

Having read the article, I'd say it belongs either on the opinion page (it details a difference of opinion about something important) or perhaps in a Books section, since it directly refers to O'Hara's books. Or it could to in the science and technology section, as many articles dealing with human sexuality probably ought to go.

The Style section of the SF Chronicle generally has stuff about fashion in it (in the same section, for instance, you can find an article about new-ish surfing fashions for women), but they like to throw articles that have anything to do with sex in there too, as if human sexuality (especially women's sexuality) were an accessory).