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Femminismo, parità, diritti LGBT e politica italiana

L’orgasmo vaginale non esiste (e vi spiego perché) — febbraio 4, 2018

L’orgasmo vaginale non esiste (e vi spiego perché)

[English translation below]

The clitoris has no other function than that of sexual pleasure.

orgasmo-vaginale

Anne Koedt – Il mito dell’orgasmo vaginale per il femminismo

Anne Koedt, femminista radicale americana, nel suo saggio del 1968 intitolato “Il mito dell’orgasmo vaginale” ha voluto sfatare il mito dell’orgasmo vaginale, educare riguardo il piacere sessuale femminile, basandosi anche sulle recenti ricerche di Alfred Kinsey. Critica apertamente il concetto di frigidità femminile elaborato da Freud, che credeva erroneamente che il sesso sia penetrativo e che una donna che non provi piacere in questo modo debba andare in cura. Per decenni si è creduto in questo mito della frigidità femminile, ma il numero elevato di donne “affette” da questa “patologia” era talmente elevato che anche gli esperti hanno dovuto fare marcia indietro. Secondo il paradigma patriarcale, la donna per essere donna avrebbe dovuto abbandonare la sua sessualità adolescenziale, quella clitoridea, per abbracciare il “piacere vaginale”. L’instaurazione di questo modello sessuale si è rivelato, però, un tentativo da parte dell’uomo di imporre alla donna un modo di vivere il sesso che non le appartiene, contrario alla sua autonomia e per questo innaturale.

Ma perché Freud era così critico nei confronti delle donne a cui non piaceva la penetrazione, da lui viste come “frigide”?

Perché per lui stesso la donna era un non-uomo, un individuo inferiore perché privo di pene e che, anzi, invidiava l’uomo perché ne ha uno. Freud ha giustificato i suoi preconcetti sulle donne elaborando una teoria che normalizza la loro inferiorità. In questo modo, ad esempio, si sono giustificati gli interventi chirurgici di riduzione delle piccole labbra. Il danno più grave, però, è stato quello di far credere alle donne di essere sbagliate. E ancora oggi donne e uomini disinformati parlano di “orgasmo vaginale”.

In realtà l’unico tipo di orgasmo esistente è quello clitorideo, come evidenziato dagli studi di Masters e Johnson. L’idea che esista un orgasmo vaginale è erroneo: l’orgasmo clitorideo avviene per stimolazione diretta della clitoride, mentre quello impropriamente detto “vaginale” avviene per stimolazione indiretta, tramite penetrazione. Il raggiungimento dell’orgasmo tramite il coito è, però, piuttosto rara negli individui di sesso femminile. Difatti, la stimolazione della clitoride tramite autoerotismo è stata associata alla massima intensità fisiologica della risposta orgasmica della donna, seguita dalla stimolazione esterna effettuata dal partner. Il livello minimo d’intensità nella risposta degli organi bersaglio veniva registrato durante il coito.

Anne Koedt si rifà a queste nuove scoperte scientifiche, contrarie a quelle freudiane, e ne approfitta per parlare di liberazione della sessualità femminile e di una nuova idea di sesso, diverso da quello definito come standard. In questo modo la donna sarà vista come un essere umano pari all’uomo, che vuole condividere l’atto sessuale in maniera uguale. Tuttavia, l’idea che il sesso non sia penetrativo mina l’istituzione patriarcale, in quanto gli uomini temono di diventare sessualmente superflui se la clitoride viene sostituita alla vagina come centro del piacere. Se si considera l’anatomia, afferma la Koedt, l’inserimento del pene nella vagina è perfetto per la riproduzione, ma non per la stimolazione sessuale, perché la clitoride è collocata all’esterno e più in alto.

Ma perché allora si diffondono ancora falsità sul piacere femminile?

Perché viviamo in un mondo patriarcale, perché esiste un sistema di oppressione, il genere, per il quale gli individui di sesso maschile opprimono quelli di sesso femminile. L’oppressione delle donne è ANCHE oppressione sessuale. Il sesso è stato ed è ancora uno strumento di asservimento della donna. Finché non si libererà il sesso dalla penetrazione obbligatoria, dall’idea che “se a una donna non piace la penetrazione il problema è il suo” non si arriverà mai all’effettiva liberazione femminile, né sociale né sessuale. Finché l’eterosessualità viene vista come la norma e non come uno dei possibili modi di vivere la propria sessualità, si manterrà l’oppressione femminile.

Carla Lonzi, la donna clitoridea, la donna vaginale e l’idea di sessualità liberata

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Carla Lonzi a sua volta affronta in “Sputiamo su Hegel” il problema del fallocentrismo e la tematica dell’orgasmo femminile. Il saggio “La donna clitoridea e la donna vaginale” si apre proprio così: “Il sesso femminile è la clitoride, il sesso maschile è il pene. […] Nell’uomo il meccanismo del piacere è strettamente connesso al meccanismo della riproduzione, nella donna meccanismo del piacere e meccanismo della riproduzione sono comunicanti, ma non coincidono. Avere imposto alla donna una coincidenza che non esisteva come dato di fatto nella sua fisiologia è stato un gesto di violenza culturale che non ha riscontro in nessun altro tipo di colonizzazione.” (p. 61). Nel saggio Carla Lonzi mette in evidenza come l’orgasmo vaginale sia un mito creato dall’uomo per mantenere lo stato di asservimento della donna, negando la sua esistenza come essere autonomo. Il piacere clitorideo, come aveva evidenziato anche Anne Koedt, è pertanto visto come potenziale minaccia perché è diretta dimostrazione che l’uomo non è indispensabile per la donna e pone le basi del rapporto sessuale come reciproco scambio di piaceri fra soggetti. Lonzi ci ricorda anche che il modello di passività imposto sulla donna si ripercuote su di lei su vari punti di vista: prima di tutto, negando la clitoride come centro del piacere e poi arrivando all’idea che la sessualità della donna sia necessariamente passiva. “Ci si chiede: ma perché la vagina è passiva? Non si può avvertire come qualcosa che prende, che agisce, invece di qualcosa che accoglie, si uniforma e subisce?” (pp. 75-76)

La clitoride è vista dalla scrittrice come un organo che debba essere equivalente al pene, ma “equivalenza non significa uguaglianza in dimensione ridotta. Infatti non si erige, non penetra, non emette sperma né orina, quindi non può fornire alla donna alcuna partecipazione a quelle esperienze tipiche della virilità a cui è collegato il mito fallico patriarcale. Ha invece una particolarità unica: permette orgasmi multipli e ininterrotti se sottoposto a stimolazione adeguata” (p. 105)

È necessario che in futuro il sesso non coincida più con penetrazione. È importante che gli atti sessuali diversi dal coito non siano visti come “preliminari” o “masturbazione”. Sesso dovrà inglobare qualunque atto che porta al reciproco piacere e l’unica differenza fra autoerotismo e sesso sarà dato unicamente dall’assenza o presenza del partner (p. 79).

Riscoprire il piacere clitorideo è la via della libertà per la donna. Allora il sesso non sarà più un’esperienza traumatica per nessuna donna, ma unicamente un reciproco accarezzarsi e toccarsi di corpi fra individui pari.

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[Translation]

Vaginal orgasm? It’s just a lie!

Anne Koedt, American radical feminist, in her essay “The myth of vaginal orgasm” (1968) debunks the myth of vaginal orgasm and educates about female sexual pleasure, according to the recent research done by Alfred Kinsey. She openly criticizes the Freudian concept of frigidity, who believes sex means penetration and that a woman should be cured, if she does not experience pleasure during what is commonly associated with the term “sex”. For decades experts believed in the myth of female frigidity, but the high number of women who “suffered” from this “disease” was so high that they had to do a step back. According to the patriarchal paradigm, the woman would have to abandon her clitoral sexuality to be fully a woman, she would have to embrace the “vaginal pleasure”. However, the establishment of this sexual model has been an attempt by men to impose on women an unnatural way of living sex and sexuality, that is contrary to their anatomy.

But why was Freud so critical of women who did not like penetration, whom he saw as “frigid”?

Because he believed a woman was a non-man, a lower individual because she doesn’t have a penis and who envied men for having one. Freud justified his prejudices against women by developing a theory that normalizes their inferiority. In this way, for example, surgical procedures for reducing the labia minora are justified. The most serious damage, however, was to make women believe they were wrong in their own bodies. And even today, uninformed women and men spread the myth of “vaginal orgasm”.

In fact, the only type of existing orgasm is clitoral, as evidenced by the Masters and Johnson’s research. It is erroneous to think that a vaginal orgasm exists: the clitoral orgasm occurs by direct stimulation of the clitoris, whereas what is wrongly known as “vaginal orgasm” happens when the clitoris is indirectly stimulated (through coitus). The achievement of orgasm through coitus is, however, rather rare in females. In fact, stimulation of the clitoris through masturbation has been associated with the maximum physiological intensity of women’s orgasmic response, followed by external stimulation performed by the partner. The minimum intensity level in the response of the target organs was recorded during coitus.

Anne Koedt refers back to the new scientific discoveries, opposed to the Freudian ones, and talks about the liberation of female sexuality and a new idea of ​​sex, which is different from the patriarchal standard. In this way women will be seen as human beings equal to men. However, the notion that sex is not penetrative undermines the patriarchal institution, as men fear to become sexually superfluous if the clitoris replaces the vagina as a centre of pleasure. If we think about anatomy, Koedt states, the insertion of the penis into the vagina is perfect for reproduction, but not for sexual stimulation, because the clitoris is located externally and higher up.

But why are myths about female pleasures so widespread?

Because we live in a patriarchal world, because there is a system of oppression, gender, that ensures male supremacy over women. The oppression of women is ALSO a sexual oppression. Sex has been and still is a means to perpetrate women’s subjugation. As long as sex won’t be free from compulsory penetration, from the idea that “if a woman doesn’t like penetration, that’s HER problem”, neither the sexual nor the social female liberation will ever occur. As long as heterosexuality is seen as the “norm “and not as one of the possible ways of living one’s sexuality, female oppression will be maintained by the patriarchal system.

Carla Lonzi – “Sputiamo su Hegel. La donna clitoridea e la donna vaginale”

Carla Lonzi, just like Koedt, addresses the issues of phallocentrism and female orgasm in “Sputiamo su Hegel”. The essay “The Clitoral and the Vaginal Woman” opens with the following statements: “The female sex (organ) is the clitoris, the male sex (organ) is the penis. […] In men the mechanism of pleasure is strictly connected to the mechanism of reproduction, in women the mechanism of pleasure and the mechanism of reproduction communicate but do not coincide. To have imposed upon women a coincidence that has not existed as a given of fact within her physiology has been an act of cultural violence that has a comparison in no other type of colonisation.” (p.61).

In the essay, Carla Lonzi highlights how the vaginal orgasm is a myth created by men to maintain the state of enslavement of women, denying their existence as autonomous beings. Clitoral pleasure, as also pointed out by Anne Koedt, is therefore seen as a potential threat because it is a direct demonstration that men are not indispensable for women and lays the foundations of sexual intercourse as a mutual exchange between equal subjects. Lonzi also reminds us that the model of passivity imposed on women affects them for many reasons: first of all, by denying the clitoris as the centre of female pleasure and by depicting women’s sexuality as passive. “One may ask: but why is vagina passive? Why cannot we see it as something that takes, that acts, instead of something that receives, that conforms, that suffers?” (pp. 75-76)

The writer argues that the clitoris should have a relation of equivalence with the penis inasmuch as a centre of pleasure,  but “equivalence does not mean equality in a reduced dimension. In fact [the clitoris] does not become erect, does not penetrate, emits neither sperm nor urine, thus it cannot provide to women participation in the typical experiences of virility, connected to the phallic patriarchal myth. It has, instead, a unique particularity: it allows multiple and uninterrupted orgasms if subjected to adequate stimulation” (p. 105)

In the future sex should no longer coincide with penetration. It is important that sexual acts other than coitus are not seen as “foreplay” or “masturbation”. Sex will have to incorporate any act that leads to mutual pleasure and the only difference between autoeroticism and sex will be given solely by the absence or presence of the partner (p. 79).

Rediscovering clitoral pleasure is the way for women’s liberation. Then sex will no longer be a traumatic experience for women, but only mutual caresses between equals.

[Fonti/References]

Lonzi, C. (2010). Sputiamo su Hegel e altri scritti. Milano: Et al.

Orgasmo femminile negli individui di sesso femminile

Il mito dell’orgasmo vaginale – Wikipedia

Koedt, Anne (1968). “The myth of the vaginal orgasm”. Notes from the Second Year.

 

Annunci
Am I homoromantic? — agosto 17, 2017

Am I homoromantic?

 

Sexual orientation is an internal mechanism that directs a person’s sexual and romantic disposition towards one or more persons, to varying degrees (LeVay & Baldwin, 2012). However, defining sexual orientation is challenging in a world that is rapidly changing. Sexual orientation has been perceived either in terms of discrete categories (homosexual, bisexual, heterosexual) (LeVay & Baldwin, 2014) or as a spectrum. Even if the debate regarding its nature still remains one of the major unsolved questions in sex science (Gangestad, Bailey, & Martin, 2000; Haslam, 1997), in this post I will talk about my personal attitude towards my sexuality, which I believe to be fluid.

romantic-orientation

As you probably remember I defined myself in some posts as a bisexual woman, while in others as a lesbian. This may be confusing for some of you and that’s one of the reasons why I would like to be clearer about it. Until I was 14 I thought to be heterosexual, because I experienced romantic and sexual interests towards people of my opposite sex. However, if I look back at, for example, the 10-years-old “me” I already had some kind of fantasies or desires towards women, which emerged predominantly in the form of dreams or weird thoughts like ‘Is she looking at me? Does she like me? Is she gay?’ At 14 years old I had my first real crush for a girl at my school. After that a really long period of self-analysis began. I started to question my heterosexuality and I looked back at my past to find traces of things that could make me understand who I really was. And I remembered about how many times I asked myself if my English teacher liked me. I remembered a girl at middle school who was defined as a ‘lesbian’ just because she kissed a girl. I remembered thinking that she was gorgeous and looking at her while she smiled at me. Then I remembered my weird relationship with what I believed to be an online friend, how I tried to flirt with her and how I was sexually attracted to her. I remembered that when I was 10 I had a dream where I kissed a girl twice. After a year of deep analysis I came to the conclusion that I’m bisexual. However, my attitude and my attraction towards both sexes is different. I only had relationships with women. I define myself as a homoromantic bisexual because I only experienced romantic attraction towards women (even if I don’t exclude a remote possibility of falling in love with a man). I also believe that my degree of sexual attraction is different depending on the sex of the person involved. The majority of my sexual desires are heterosexual (85-90%), even though I’m also sexually attracted to woman and I had more sex with women than with men. However, my romantic interest in people of the opposite gender is really low. Some people have troubles understanding my sexuality and they don’t like the term homoromantic. They perceive the expression of my preferences as a threat or as a way to label what I am. But why would it be a label? Why is the term bisexual a more acceptable term than bisexual homoromantic? Bisexuality is not 50% attraction towards women and 50% attraction towards men. It’s much more complex than this, just as sexuality itself.
Even though further studies might have to clarify what sexuality is and what its relation to romantic attraction is, in this post I wanted to show you how I define myself and how proud I am to tell you: I am a bisexual. I am a homoromantic!

P. S. I’m not offended if someone uses the term lesbian to define what I am. However, I believe it’s not accurate. I prefer using the term bisexual because I don’t want to erase any part of myself. If I sleep with a man, I’m not straight. If I sleep with a woman, I’m not a lesbian. I’m still bi, I’m still me.
Thank you.

❤ 

UPDATE:

I thought a lot about deleting this article because it doesn’t represent what I am anymore. I believe there’s little research about romantic attraction and I’m not sure if it’s really separated from sexual attraction. While writing this article in August 2017, I found indeed some articles about romantic attraction, but they were just hypotheses. Since some bisexual people had a romantic preference for one of the sexes, they said there may be a difference between romantic and sexual attraction. However, there’s no evidence to prove it. I respect people who use terms as “homoromantic”, “biromantic” or “heteroromantic”. However, I do think that bisexual homoromantic is a word that doesn’t define me anymore. I’m a lesbian and I do fall in love just with women. I was wrong in believing that being a lesbian means excluding someone. It’s not excluding, it’s just being what I am: a woman attracted to women. A woman who loves women and loves sleeping with them.]

[References] 

Gangestad, S. W., Bailey, J. M., & Martin, N. G. (2000). Taxometric analyses of sexual orientation and gender identity. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 78, 1109–1121.
LeVay, S., & Baldwin, J. (2012). Human sexuality (4th ed.). Sunderland, MA: Sinauer
Savin-Williams, Ritch C. “An exploratory study of the categorical versus spectrum nature of sexual orientation.” The Journal of Sex Research 51.4 (2014): 446-453.