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The Ubyssey Mar 9, 2007

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Friday, 9 March, 2007 THE UBYSSEY
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International Women's Day has come around
again—one day out of the year to celebrate
and vindicate the liberation and ongoing
empowerment of another 'special interest'
group (this one happening to comprise 51
per cent of the world's population). With it
we bring you another edition of the Ubyssey
Women's Issue. We hope you enjoy it.
It seems that as time passes, issues stay
the same while public attitudes change like
the seasons. Unequal pay rates and employment opportunities, abortion, sexualised violence, child care support, objectification, and
body image distortion continue to remain
largely "women's problems," while any person with their eyes open understands that
these problems are systemic, both caused by
and affecting the community at large. They
don't go away because they're part and parcel of so much more than a 'special interest'
issue—they are symptoms of dated lessons
we are taught as children, false truths we internalise before we are old enough to question them.
With this edition of the Women's Issue,
we hope to shed light on how the current
state of affairs is, as ever, in a turbulent
flux of achievement and struggle. Women
are now able to explore careers and lifestyles like never before, through avenues
paved with the sweat and tears of our
But opportunity is far from equally spread
or stable. Some privileged women can truly
have it all, career, prestige, and family, while
the needs of others remain neglected. Some
single mothers are simultaneously enjoying
academic tenure and autonomous parenthood. Sex trade workers on the other hand,
aren't even allowed to keep a roof over their
heads or support their dependants. While
some women actively support the closure of
'useless' Status of Women offices, Status of
Women is in fact the department that funds
much-needed reports on issues like the
rights violations of Aboriginal women. Some
women are pulling ahead; others are getting
left behind.
Because of the growing disparity between those with privilege and those with
out, "women's issues" has started taking on
an extremely nebulous identity. Those of
us with access to money and education can
cease to see what there still is to fight for.
Post-feminism, in its bastard sense, is pretty
widespread; one can often find women who
will say emphatically that they are not feminists, whatever that means. We assume these
women don't mean that they're not in support of women voting, learning, and making
independent choices, but perhaps that they
do not identify with the esoteric academia or
hardline radicalism most people attribute to
"stereotypical" feminism.
So we hope this issue brings with it a sense
of unity, empowerment, and accessibility to
everyone, men as well as women. Because
real improvement of real problems will only
occur when the lines of communication are
open and active. Let's get talking about these
issues, because it looks like they're not going
away anytime soon. 9
—Momoko Price and Mary Leighton
Women's Issue Coordinators
Arab Latin Fiesta
Yalynka Dancers, Reeltime,
Mona's Lebanese Cuisine (1328
and pHRockets.
Tickets $15/10
March 9
Come see what happens
Birth Fest
when you mix Middle Eastern
Britannia Community Centre
belly dancing with Latin
(1661 Napier)
March 10, 10:00a m-3:00pm
Tickets $7 with reservation,
Event celebrating pregnancy
$10 without, and $25 for a
and babies, featuring info and
Lebanese "feast"
resources, crafts and locally
made products, and family
Spring Fling
activities and performances.
March 10,530pm
Ukrainian Cultural Centre (805 E.
Socialist Education
The Association of United
SFU Harbour Centre (515 W.
Ukrainian Canadians presents
a concert, dinner, and
March 9, 7:00pm, March 10,
dance featuring the AUUC
performing-arts groups, the
Discussions on topics such
Vancouver Folk Orchestra,
as Cuba, Venezuela, and
Barvinok Choir, Dovbush and
indigenous rights.
UBC Film Sociffby
/f/f       /     /f/i       • SINCE1935
March 9
Borat Beer Garden
Rated 14A, 84 minutes
March 10-11
7pm: Borat
Rated 14A, 84 minutes
9:30pm: The Good German
Screenings @ Norm Theatre in SUB
Admission: $3.50 (non-members) $2.00 (members)
Membership: $10 {students)
For more info, call 604 822 3697 or visit www.ams.ubc.ca/clubs/filmsoc
CLINIC FOR Students. Tax
returns? We're here to help! From
March 2 to April 6, UBC TACS
will offer professional tax return
services and answer any related
questions at NO COST. Tuesdays
to Fridays, 10:00AM to 4:30PM,
at International House. Please
Register online. Spaces limited.
For more information or to
register, visit
Academic committee proudly
supports: The UBC   INFORMS
(Institute for Operations Research
and Management Sciences)
Student Chapter's Management
and Operations in Health Care
Mini-Symposium. Time: 1-5
PM, Friday, March 16, 2007, in
Room 102, Michael Smith Laboratories. Cost:
FREE! Stamp points: 40. Please
RSVP by March 14 to
of M*A*S*H Talk & Book
Signing Wednesday, March 21 at 7
PM, Chapters Robson
submissions. Realities of Race
Week Organizing Committee is
holding an art exhibit in the SUB
art gallery in conjunction with the
week of events on the theme:
Articulating the Invisible: Voice,
Power, and Politics of Experience.
The exhibit will show March
19-23, 2007 Submission forms
iproject. DEADLINE March 9,
2007. Volunteers also needed!
Contact Ria w/submissions and to
volunteenri akawara@gmail.com
Academic Services
Important Papers? Essays?
Retired Lawyer—25 years, Former
Professor~4 years, Interested in
proof-reading, organizing and
correcting for you. No difficulties
in comprehending papers written
on nearly any topic. Can make
your compositions clear, forceful
and meaningful. Email Dan
for students!
tooktf^     Tnmt     ,
ceVtf     °$tand Found?
QVj o* ^ouncement?
For more
information, visit
Room 11 in the sub
or call 82 2-1654
Friday, 9 March, 2007
Editorial Board
women's issue coordinators:
Momoko Price &
Mary Leighton
NEWS EDITOR Brandon Adams &
Colleen Tang
news@ubyssey bc.ca
culture@ubyssey bc.ca
Momoko Price
features@ubyssey bc.ca
photos@ubyssey bc.ca
Champagne Choquer
COPY EDITOR Levi Barnett
copy@ubyssey bc.ca
volunteers@ubyssey bc.ca
Andrew MacRae
WEBMASTER Matthew Jewkes
The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University of
British Columbia. It is published every Tuesday and Friday by The
Ubyssey Publications Society. We are an autonomous, democratically run student organisation, and all students are encouraged to
Editorials are chosen and written by the Ubyssey staff They
are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily reflect
the views of The Ubyssey Publications Society or the University of
British Columbia. All editorial content appearing in The Ubyssey is
the property of The Ubyssey Publications Society. Stories, opinions,
photographs and artwork contained herein cannot be reproduced
without the expressed, written permission of The Ubyssey Publications Society.
The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University
Press (CUP) and adheres to CUP's guiding principles.
Letters to the editor must be under 300 words. Please include
your phone number, student number and signature (not for publication) as well as your year and faculty with all submissions. ID will be
checked when submissions are dropped off at the editorial office of
The Ubyssey; otherwise verification will be done by phone/'Perspec-
tives" are opinion pieces over 300 words but under 750 words and
are run according to space."Freestyles"are opinion pieceswritten by
Ubyssey staff members. Priority will be given to letters and perspectives over freestyles unless the latter istime sensitive. Opinion pieces
will not be run until the identity of the writer has been verified. The
Ubyssey reserves the right to edit submissions for length and clarity. All letters must be received by 12 noon the day before intended
publication. Letters received after this point will be published in the
following issue unless there is an urgent time restriciton or other
matter deemed relevant by the Ubyssey staff
It is agreed by all persons placing display or classified advertising that if the Ubyssey Publications Society fails to publish an
advertisement or if an error in the ad occurs the liability of the UPS
will not be greater than the price paid for the ad. The UPS shall not
be responsible for slight changes or typographical errors that do not
lessen the value orthe impact of the ad.
Room 24, Student Union Building
6138 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver, BCV6T lZl
tel: 604-822-2301
fax: 604-822-9279
web: www.ubyssey.bc.ca
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Room 23, Student Union Building
advertising: 604-822-1654
business office: 604-822-6681
fax: 604-822-1658
e-mail: advertising@ubysseybc.ca
AD SALES Cynthia Zhao
AD DESIGN Michael Bround
These are the godless fucks who made the paper:
Colleen Tang, Eric Szeto, Paul Bucci, Champagne Choquer, Boris Korby, Brandon Adams, Levi Barnett, Christine McLaren, Caroline Chuang, Matthew Jewkes, Jesse
Ferreras, Kathrine Kerr, Kathryn Stewart, Candine Va-
lantin, Oker Chen, Kellan Higgins, Jesus Christ, Keegan
Bursaw, Michelle Moore, Candice Okada, Isabel Ferreras, Andrew Macrae and Amanda Stutt.
Canadian    Canada Post Sales Agreement
University    Number 0040878022
Press THE UBYSSEY Friday, 9 March, 2007 utom&^y lUvu^ fa)
Sex trade laws
standing in the way  I
When it comes to street-level sex work, why don't our laws put safety first?
by Amanda Stutt
With media attention firmly focused on
the trial of Robert Pickton, charged
with the murders of 26 women on
the Downtown Eastside—most of whom
were sex trade workers—it's hard not to
get unsettled by the grisly details unfolding, the courtroom drama of the trial itself
and become distracted by the sensation.
However, the attention is focused more on
Pickton himself rather than the women he is
accused of killing.
What has escaped scrutiny is an analysis
of the archaic laws that restrict sex trade
workers' freedom and their ability to protect
themselves from possible harm. These laws
reveal a system built upon a paradox: prostitution itself is legal, but everything surrounding it is illegal. In the solicitation portion of
the Canadian Criminal Code, the "communicating law" (Section 213) makes it illegal for
a sex worker to communicate or negotiate
any details of an exchange in a public place,
including a car. The "living off the avails of
prostitution" (Section 212) makes it illegal
for the dependants of sex workers to benefit
from money earned from sex work, and the
"keeping a common bawdy house law" (Section 210) makes it illegal for a sex exchange
to take place a sex worker's home. According
to some experts, the applications of these
laws are not protecting women working in
the sex trade, but are instead placing them
in direct danger.
New Democratic Party MLA for Vancouver East Libby Davies believes the communicating law "creates a very dangerous situation in that sex trade workers are, in effect,
making split-second decisions about whether or not to get into someone's car...because
they are under threat of enforcement."
"I don't know of any other activity that is
legal, but you can't communicate, you can't
do it anywhere. It creates a very untenable
situation," she said. "It's a strange debate because we're not addressing the issue. What
we should be addressing is whether a harmful or dangerous situation is taking place.
Most politicians don't want to deal with
these laws. They consider them too controversial, but I think it's incredibly urgent."
Davies believes that the laws marginalise
sex trade workers because "many women
in Vancouver are involved in what we call
the 'survival sex trade,' so they're not necessarily there by choice. So to criminalise
these women and to place stigma on them
and make it completely untenable for them
to have sort of safety or rights is extremely
Davies explained that a parliamentary
sub-committee was set up to review issues
pertaining to prostitution, with a motion set
forth to decriminalise portions of the solicitation laws, but the committee concluded in
December 2006 without solid consensus for
recommendations for decriminalisation.
According to Davies, "the report didn't go
nearly as far as I wanted it to go because I
do support decriminalisation...At the end of
the day the Conservatives on the committee
took their own position, which was more of
a stronger prohibition, which I think is [a]
completely untenable position."
"These laws are a complete failure," she
"The government..can't hide behind the
contradictions in these laws," added Davies.
"We focus on street prostitution and turn a
blind eye to everything else. The whole basis
for [the] laws is very contradictory as it exists now."
Davies believes that criminalising sex
trade activities has not helped either sex
trade workers or local communities, but has
actually created a more dangerous situation.
"Not only with the missing women but generally with the sex trade across Canada, the
evidence [to support] that is so compelling...
that I don't know how anybody could refute
that," she said.
Davies said most public attention and
law enforcement is directed at street prostitution because that's where it is most visible and "it has nothing to do with supposedly helping these women. The evidence
will show that enforcement is creating a lot
of harm, not good."
"If they were designed to protect
individuals in the sex trade or local communities they've failed on both counts. Not
only are the laws not working, they're actually harmful."
Davies explained that while there was not
a recommendation in the report for decriminalisation, there was a call for law reform,
and a conclusion that the state should not be
prohibiting consenting sexual activities between adults. "We need to provide better exit
services and programs and there are recommendations in the report on that."
According to Davies, the key issue is
separating what is consenting and what
is not, and the law needs to be applied to
areas that deal with violence, exploitation
and coercion.
Kate Gibbson, Executive Director of the
Women's Information Safe House (WISH),
said "with the trial on we have an opportunity to let people know via the media that
women are still facing violence every day.
They are still out there on the street, still vulnerable to predators and victims of discrimination and [they] feel isolated."
Gibbson explained that sex workers face
a plethora of barriers, including access to
healthcare and housing, and emphasised
the difficulty sex workers encounter when
attempting to access housing.
"For them to approach someone about
housing and negotiate when they can move
in, what they can and can't do there." she
said. "They face a lot of barriers...that's one
thing that's not discussed. They don't have a
safe place to live and we don't have enough
services for women
[to get] off the street."
Gibbson    feels   that
the solicitation laws are
only one aspect to the
barriers   sex   workers
face in their daily lives,
and  pointed  out that
"Sex work is only one
aspect of their lives...
They live lives just like
the rest of us in terms
of needing a place to
live or needing something to eat."
Gibbson explained
the     difference     between   survival   sex
work and other sex
work such as escort
work comes down to a
matter of choice. "When a
woman gets entrenched in
survival  sex work,  they've
pretty much come to the end
of the road in terms of choice.
Either they do that, or they
have absolutely nothing."
UBC Sociology and Women's    and    Gender    Studies
Professor Becki Ross also supports decriminalisation of solicitation laws.
"[Sex trade workers] lack safe,
secure  places to  conduct business, and as a result off-street
trade has always flourished," she
said.   "These   laws  have   pushed
street-level workers further east,
into poorly lit, isolated commercial
zones where they are not visible...
anti-prostitution laws have contributed to making women vulnerable to
"[The] police enforce laws [and
are] taught to treat sex workers
as criminals...not women who
deserve protection and justice,"
said  Ross,  adding these  laws
reflect  the   abolitionist  attitudes
of media, politicians and urban planners
who have "long constructed sex workers
as...a public nuisance."
Ross also pointed out that the deaths
of the women on the Downtown Eastside
are not isolated incidents, but are part of a
larger framework of violence targeted
against women in the sex trade, citing notorious murder cases as examples that
range from "Jack the Ripper" to Gary Ridge-
way, the "Green River Killer," and recently
the murdered prostitutes of Ipswich,
Ross emphasised the absurd and arbitrary nature of the solicitation law, "The solicitation law is troubling because everyone
solicits—capitalism depends on it."
Ross also believes the laws won't solve
the broader issues of poverty, homelessness,
addictions and racism facing many survival
sex workers.
According to Ross, one solution is that
sex trade work needs to be "reconfigured
and understood as work, just like other facets of service work."
Sex work, she argued, needs to be decriminalised and revalued. Sex workers need
choices and rights granted to other workers
"such as freedom from violence, access to legal recourse, health care and social services,
and the right to communicate without fear
of reprisal or police intimidation." 9 (Al  £2£±^j£2ii£ Friday, 9 March, 2007 THE UBYSSEY
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Pay more for your kids
Child care to lose $455 million over the next
three years, but help may arrive
by Levi Barnett
April showers bring May flowers,
but for BC parents, the new month
will also lead to increased costs. On
March 3 1, the federal government
will reduce child care payments
to the provinces, leaving British
Columbia with $455 million less
over the next three years.
Currently, BC Child Care providers receive a subsidy of roughly
$40 per month per child from federal monies, as part of the Child
Care Operating Fund (CCOF). The
CCOF financially assists licensed
child care providers to keep their
doors open. When the federal subsidy ends these providers will take
a hit, forcing them to raise their
rates to parents.
According to Katherine Millar,
Student VP of Advocacy for the
UBC Daycare Parent Council, "Everyone's raising fees since they're
subsidised now."
Millar adds that at UBC the
lack of child care payments by the
federal government will translate
into an increase of $55 more per
month for parents. The new rate
will begin on July 1 when the province implements its new budget,
reflecting the federal funding
Help may be on the way, however. While providers' fees will
go up, the Conservative government now offers a $100 monthly
payment to all parents per child
under six, regardless of income.
Known as the Universal Child Care
Benefit (UCCB), the program, operating since July, shifts government
support from providers directly to
parents. Unlike a previous allowance offered by the federal government, the benefit is taxable, meaning that its real value for parents
is lower than the implied $1,200
per year.
Even with the UCCB, child
care fees charged for those living
near UBC are far higher than the
"[Child care] costs over $900 a
month on average on Vancouver's
West Side," explains Millar, referring to the cost of full-time care for
infants and toddlers.
The government claims that the
program allows parents greater
flexibility in choosing child care
options. Critics argue that this undercuts public-oriented non-profit
child care providers.
Monica Lysack, executive director of the Child Care Advocacy
Association of Canada, says of the
UCCB, "It is a family allowance,
but it's not child care. Parents
have no child care...this is only
getting worse." Because intake
into the provincial CCOF program
will be capped, less incentive will
exist for affordable child care centres to open.
At the same time the UCCB was
announced last year the federal
government claimed it would be
creating 125,000 new child care
spaces over the next five years.
According to a public letter from
BC Minister of state for child care
Linda Reid, the province can't act
on this plan until the federal government releases more details.
"It's all a great mystery,"
says Lysack of the situation.
"[The federal government] committed to announcing a plan beginning April 1. They have yet
released not a word. Government
ministers are very unhappy and
kept in dark. All other provinces
are trying to plan their budget,
but they don't have enough
information to work with."
Despite impending cuts, the
province will continue to fund its
portion of the CCOF and other early childhood programs.
Additional money will continue
to help low-income parents to the
tune of up to several hundred dollars per child per month, said Reid.
"We as a province have placed an
incredible priority on vulnerable
families so we are maintaining
at its enhanced rate subsidies to
25,000 families, sitting at about
$ 126 million annually."
While overall BC funding for
child care is set to decrease by July
1, critics such as Lysack's group
say that the province's projected
surplus of $ 2 billion could be used
to fill the gap.
"BC chooses where it spends
its money...they're not getting the
money Federal Liberals promised,
but they decide how to spend the
money they have," says Millar. 9 THE UBYSSEY Frtd^9Ma^2007   %22£*£J££ [SI
Activists unimpressed by Status of Women funding
by Isabel Ferreras
A shock to the system, a shock to women, a
shock to all: Stephen Harper's Conservative
government has promised an additional $5
million to go towards establishing new funding for Status of Women Canada.
This new funding comes after the federal
government announced on November 30,
2006 that they planned to cut $5 million in
order to increase administrative savings.
This meant that 12 out of the program's 16
regional offices would be shut down by April
1, 2007. Though a promise was made that
the money would be reinvested in programs
for women, this was not enough for community activist Fatima Williams and her peers.
Following news of the cut on January 18,
Williams and her fellow activists began a
protest outside the Vancouver office of Status of Women Canada. Doing this wasn't
enough to garner a strong effect. Members
of the group took action by occupying the
office, starting at 1pm. They demanded a
meeting with Canadian Heritage and Status
of Women minister Beverly Oda. At approximately 10pm, Oda scheduled a meeting with
their advocacy representatives for March 3.
The group of 14 activists prepared pre
sentations arguing that keeping the offices
open should be a priority.
"We had met Oda's demands, for size of
the meeting, and time of the meeting," said
Williams. "She pretended to listen to our
recommendations and did not change her
position one bit, despite the brilliant presentations she had taken the time to watch."
Status of Women Canada was formed in
1967 with the mandate to focus on three
areas: improving women's economic autonomy and well-being, eliminating systemic
violence against women and children, and
advancing women's human rights.
As of April 1, four Status of Women Canada offices will remain in operation: Edmonton (serving British Columbia, the Yukon,
the Northwest Territories, Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan), Montreal (serving
Quebec and Nunavut), Moncton (serving the
Atlantic region), and Ottawa (serving Ontario and national organisations).
This could result in Canadians having
considerably less direct access to the resources they need to get their women's advocacy groups running the way they should,
according to Williams.
"Organisations count on the reliability of
the Status of Women offices so that they can
gain proper advising, proper guidance, and
proper funding," she said. "Without that,
what will happen to them?"
Nancy Jean-Waugh, assistant deputy director of Status of Women Canada, believes
these changes will have a positive outcome.
"Due to unnecessary costs, we are formulating a much more efficient way of funding
our women's advocacy groups across Canada," she said.
It was announced March 7 that the
federal government would be putting $5
million back into the budget for Status of
Women to establish two new sectors of the
program: the Women's Community Fund
and the Women's Partnership Fund. The
Women's Community fund is intended to
aid organisations at the local, regional, and
national levels in order to foster the full
participation of women in all aspects of
Canadian life.
The Women's Partnership Fund, meanwhile, intends to enhance the already existing grant program, serving such organisations as the Native Women's Association of
Canada. This is intended to facilitate engagement with the organisations, as well as any
public institutions seeking grants.
According to Williams, this declaration
has some underlying details that have not
been published.
"Though the budgethas been replenished
with the $ 5 million originally cut, we are being misled," she said. "Yes, the budget is at
its highest level in history, sitting at three
percent more than what we started with before the cuts."
"What Canadians won't realise when
they see this news report is that the government is now allowing their funding to go
towards private for-profit organisations and
groups, as opposed to prioritising serving
those who most need the funding...the nonprofit groups."
"We are now in an even more difficult
position than we were when the funds were
cut. They will be competing with these private companies for government funding."
Shauna Paull, another advocate for
sustaining the Status of Women program,
is angry over the difficulties of access to
the offices.
"We can't access the assistants in the Status of Women office unless we live in one
of their four respective cities," she said.
"Women can't exchange information as easily, they can't form coalitions as easily, and
our ideas will not be shared as easily." 9
mm. sSi
Stop the violence!" Women protest under dismal conditions
Women gathered in Chinatown to speak out against violence against women. The skies were dark, but their spirits were ignited as they voiced concerns on a
wide range of topics, from the Palestinian conflict to issues of Aboriginal homicide and the sex trade, kellan higgins photo
Accelerate your future with the Diploma in Accounting
Program (DAP) at the University of British Columbia.
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accounting for entry into a professional accounting designation
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Find out how DAP can accelerate your future.
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School of Business
Opening Worlds
ience   Ficti0o
^ Book
Thursday March 15 @ 7pm
245 East Broadway, Vancouver
This month's book is:
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Need more info?
Call Doug 6(604)526-5621
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March 19th
Winners to be
March 30th.
stupid! 16^S l£2!2Z£J££.   [[ii!Iii,M![£!lL,?°°Z THE UBYSSEY
University of British Columbia
University Boulevard Concept Drawing
Following up on the results of the University Boulevard International Architectural
Competition in April 2005, this highly anticipated project is now in the design
phase and construction is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2007.
Come out and meet the architects to learn more and give us your views on how
the design is proceeding.
WHEN:     Tuesday, March 13th
2:00pm - 6:00pm
WHERE:   Student Union Building
Main Concourse
We look forward to seeing you there!
WHEN:      Tuesday, March 13th
4:00pm - 5:00pm
WHERE:    Student Union Building
Room 42U
For more information please contact Norman Sippert at 604.827.3500 or by
email at norman.sippert@ubc.ca.
UBC's Emerging Community
AT BCIT, there's a lot of talk — which you'd expect as part of
a well-rounded education. But there's also a lot of building,
designing, presenting, measuring, experimenting, reporting,
playing, researching, drilling, welding, programming, painting,
networking, laughing, planning, surveying, manufacturing,
collaborating and innovating.
Now that's something to talk about. Are you ready to act?
The possibility of polyamory
PLENTY TO GO AROUND? The potential of polyamory.
by Momoko Price
Jillian Deri is an SFU graduate
student who studies what many
of us might consider a dream subject: polyamorous relationships.
But spare her the standard, exoti-
cised envy, the "lucky you's" and
the "what I wouldn't give's." Deri
stresses about her work like any
other PhD student, perhaps more
so, because not only is it her work,
it's her life.
Deri has been actively practicing and studying queer polyamory
for the past six or seven years. At
the age of thirty, she is currently
involved in her first long-term relationship of three years, and over
the course of this partnership has
explored and sustained numerous
shorter, open relationships with
other people. Polyamory does not
mean swinging: it's about sustaining real, emotional relationships
with your partners, not just "free
love," so to speak. It's the path Deri's chosen, and like anyone else,
she works to keep it as functional
as she can, to be as responsible as
she can.
Personally, she never gets involved with more than two people
at any given time, but she has
known people who somehow manage to balance several partners
simultaneously. She even dated a
woman who at the time was juggling seven consensual, sexual relationships at once.
Sounds hedonistic, impossibly fulfilling lifestyle? Don't get
carried away. Deri warns against
casting polyamory or polyamorous
people in any kind of superior
light, though many in the community may occasionally do so on
their own. Polyamory is certainly
not for everyone. "If you tend to get
jealous easily then clearly it would
suck," she quips pragmatically.
"You'd be miserable."
In her experience, embracing
polyamory is akin to embracing
any other sexual lifestyle. You accept and identify with it because
it reflects what works best for you
and what you prefer. Polyamory
is no more universally evolved or
"better" than monogamy than being queer is universally "better"
than being straight (or vice versa).
But while we would intuitively
acknowledge that polyamory is obviously "not for everyone," why is
it that so few people actively question the institution of monogamy?
"Celeste West once said that we
live in a world that embraces 'monogamy with a wink,'" Deri said.
She went on to explain how in conventional society, we tend to accept
monogamy as the "ideal," or "more
serious" kind of relationship, the
one we are ultimately in pursuit
of, in spite of the fact that it fails
dismally for so many of us—repeatedly. When it does fail, we tend to
blame our own personal shortcomings instead of questioning whether or not the rules really work for
us. How many of us have had a relationship fail because one person
or both started feeling stifled and
cashed in their chips? How many
of us felt guilty about it?
Poly, as it's called by those familiar with it, has been around
for quite a while, though historically it's been far more readily
embraced by the queer community
than by the Western heterosexual
world. Why? Because queers have
been disqualified from the institution of hardcore monogamy, otherwise known as marriage, until very
recently. "Because queers were
denied marriage, they were free
to think critically and reflexively
about monogamy and think of what
works for them," Deri said.
But, queer or straight, polyamory takes work. In the past decade
or so a kind of how-to industry has
grown, comprising books, like Dos-
sie Easton's The Ethical Slut, meetings, podcasts, and workshops on
how to address the obstacles to
healthy poly, namely issues like
jealousy, honesty and negotiation.
Though poly certainly is an alternative to monogamy, it requires
substantial reflection to deal with
the negative feelings that tend to
spawn when deviating from the
conventional norm. Deri says part
of this process is thinking about
these feelings practically. Instead
of being ashamed of jealousy and
denying its existence, a healthy
way to deal with it is to accept the
fact that sometimes one has the
right to be jealous.
It becomes apparent talking to
Deri that polyamory is obviously
a real option for many women in
current Western society, though
it's generally swept under the rug
by mainstream culture. And while
many of us might be better off
monogamous, perhaps polyamory
has potential for some of us who
haven't considered it simply by virtue of the fact that we didn't know
itwas possible. 9 THE UBYSSEY [rtday^MwcMOO?   %2Z£*£J££ 1*7}
Dyke porn: it's all about us
by Candice Vallantin
Photo by Oker Chen
"Good Dyke Porn, you'll know it when you
see it." But have you ever heard of such a
thing? Chances are you haven't, because
there simply isn't a whole lot of good material out there.
Brenda Robbins, an up-and-coming por-
nographer in her 40s, is bringing women
together on the silver screen in the hopes
of broadening the limited selection of erotic
entertainment available for women. It's a
unique attempt to launch a new niche in the
thriving adult entertainment industry that
consistency excludes women from working
behind the scenes.
Robbins majored in film studies at the
University of Manitoba before moving to
Vancouver to become a firefighter. But her
ambitions as an independent filmmaker
were never put to rest.
"My plan all along was to be a fire-fighter
and to do porn on the side. So I'd been wanting to do porn for years and years," she says.
But after a year or so of trying to get hired by
the firefighting department, Robbins finally
cracked. "I decided, screw that. If this is what
I really want to do, I'm going to pour all my
energy into it and make it my job. So that's
what I'm doing. I'm starting my own business, I'm dedicating my life to it."
Six months into the project, Robbins has
already shot a few scenes and begun developing her website, gooddykeporn.com. So
far, there are only a few teaser pictures available foreshadowing things to come, but Robbins hopes it will become a "sex-positive online community" that will be more than just
a source of dyke porn.
Growing Pains
While pornography for lesbians certainly
isn't widespread, it isn't entirely new either.
In 1985 Nan Kinney and Debi Sundahl, producers of Fatal Media, created the first lesbian erotic film, Private Pleasures and Shadows, created by women, for women.
Although Fatal Media continues to create erotic films, this daring new genre lost
momentum in the mid 90s until SIR (Sex,
Indulgence and Rock'n Roll) Video, produced by couple Shar Rednour and Jackie
Strano, began creating more erotic lesbian
films with a slightly educational appeal. In
January 2001, their feature film Hard Love
and How to Fuck in High Heels was awarded
the best all-girl feature at the AVN (Adult
Video News) awards in Las Vegas, otherwise
known as the Porn Oscars. This was a surprising victory for a woman-produced film
intended for a female audience, since this
category is often reserved for traditional
"girl-on-girl" movies featuring blond plastic
babes fondling each other for a male intended audience.
Most recently though, Pink and White
productions, a one woman operation run
by Shine Louise Houston, has dominated
the dyke porn scene since it released Crash
Pad in 2005. Robbins says it is pretty much
the only dyke porn movie most rental stores
will have. "It's become synonymous with
dyke porn," she says.
Some are simply unhappy with this narrow selection of erotic female oriented films.
When contrasted against the extensive proliferation of male-oriented hetero and homosexual porn available, this handful of movies certainly isn't something to get overly
excited about.
Hey ladies, I mean, guys...
One challenge that has perhaps stunted the
growth of the dyke porn industry is its rejection by both the mainstream world of adult
films and that of radical feminists such as
Catherine Mackinnon and Andrea Dworkin,
who promoted anti-porn legislation in the
90s. As a result, pornography has been categorised by some as a form of entertainment
that harms vulnerable women through coerced subordination, and sexual abuse.
But Robbins argues her films are a
form of empowerment rather than one of
"That's my goal, to show that women do
have sex and women love to have sex and it's
empowering to be public about it within our
community," she said.
In fact, Robbins's concept was so appealing to some that she received ten replies
within a day of posting a request for models on superdyke.com, an online lesbian
Shay Kingston was the
first to reply to Robbins's request and so
far she has already
shot a couple scenes. Tall, outgoing and feminine, Kingston, who was once a professional
model and dominatrix, wanted to participate
in the project," because I'm an exhibitionist
and I just wanted to try something new."
She filmed her last scene with her trans-
gendered boyfriend Oliver, a cute blond and
blue-eyed boy with a Dennis the Menace-type
smile last Saturday. The two met on super-
dyke a couple of months ago and have clearly
been infatuated with each other ever since.
Although they agree that shooting scenes in
complete silence with four other people in
the room focusing cameras and booms on
you can be a bit awkward at first, they both
emphatically agree that coercion nor abuse
plays a role in such a project. "Everybody is
going out of their way to make sure everyone
is comfortable. The actresses come up with
their own scenes, and Brenda is just the director of photography really," Kingston says.
She smiles and looks at Oliver and they laugh,
"besides, no one is signing up for the money,
because it's really not that fabulous."
Both of them seem excited about contributing to the creation of something new, especially in a genre that lacks lustre. "What I
don't like about dyke porn is that it still feels
like it's been directed by a man. You see the
same penetration close ups you would see in
a mainstream girl on girl."
Oliver chimes in, "and when you have
feminist politics involved, it tames it down
a little because you can't have anything that
qualifies as being submissive to a man."
Robbins's project differs from the dyke
films of the 80s and 90s because it isn't explicitly political and it is more inclusive of
the whole queer community, including those
who, like Oliver, identify as a man rather
than a woman.
And while Robbins emphasises that
she encourages anyone to model for her
films, Kingston and Oliver hesitatingly admit. "The problem with the stuff
from the
80s and the 90s is that they're really into
real people with real bodies and well...some
of them just aren't that attractive. You can't
pick up on their fantastic personality so all
you have is the visual."
Breaking from the traditional mold created
in San Francisco, "the Mecca of dyke porn,"
Robbins hopes to fulfill her goal of providing
an entertaining, sexy alternative for lesbians
looking for erotic films. She is currently toiling away in the hopes of meeting the April
16 deadline for the Queer Film Festival.
"I'm hoping they'll want to show it, but
there are no guarantees so I'm going to do
the best I can and make something to be
proud of." Although she is only in the early
stages of production, she is looking forward
to launching her full website in August of
this year and is crossing her fingers, hoping
for a full film release at the Festival in October. "Either way, I'm going to be launching it at that time and I'll have a big party
anyways." 9
and put your
writing to work
Tessa MacKinnon, Technical Writer
Graduate* Print Futures:
Professional Writing Program
Practical, intense classes in writing, editing, research and design.
Attend an Information Session
Mar 14   April        6:30pm   Rm5109
For more information contact Maureen Nicholson at
604-527-5292 or prlntfutures@douglas.bc.ca
New Westminster Campus
700 Royal Ave. (one block (ram
the New Westminster Sky Train Station)
Douglas College
You can go anywhere from here
Like writing for us?
Thinking about
taking on a position?
Well, if you're
in a student
journalism job,
f erceptions of Africa: /\ Dialogue
I nree evenings of talks, discussion, and reflection
Relating to Africa, .AIDSi ar|d Representation
Thursday, March 8 - Saturday, March 10,2007
UBC Museum of Anthropology
6393 N.W. Marine Drive, Vancouver, B.C.
Keynote speakers (in order of date) include:
Dr. Handel Wright, Canada Research Chair, Comparative Cultural Studies
Michael Condwe & Aaron Maluwa, Kduiators from Malawi
Dr. Julio Montaner, Director, BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS
Tickets $9/ereniiig or $20 for series of 3; students $7/eveniiig or $15 for series
To register cull 604.822.5087. Tor limes cull (M.822.5978 or visit niou.ubc.cu
iUSEOMof      ^k
nthropology /    1  mtA
a™   THEUBJSSEY Fr]rJayJ_MarcM007   %2££*&lt^ til)
"Nobody cm make you
feel Inferior without your
—Eleanor Roosevelt
"The thing women have yet
to learn Is nobody gives you
power. You just take It."
—Roseanne Ban
"I'm tough, I'm ambitious,
and / know exactly what /
want. It that makes me a
bitch, okay."
"There are very few jobs that
actually require a penis or
vagina. All other jobs should
be open to everybody."
—Florynce Kennedy
"Women are not Inherently
passive or peaceful. We're not
anything but human."
—Robin Morgan
"There Is more difference
within the sexes than between
—Ivy Compton-Burnett
"In passing, also, I would like
to say that the first time Adam
had a chance he laid the
blame on a woman."
—Nancy Astor
"Women need not always keep
their mouths shut and their
wombs open."
—Emma Goldman
Packaged Women
by Katherine Kerr
Most women are introduced to
sex in confrontational and violating ways; many before they are
ready. Women's and girls's bodies are sexualised, objectified, and
I took this photograph in a
department store. I was going
there to pick up paper for an
upcoming project when I found
these naked women hanging in
bags. I felt haunted and repressed.
The packaged women mocked
me with their long legs, made-up
faces, male gazes, and ready-to-
go attitudes. They are plastic, the
simulacra that we all try to be...
a copy of an original that never
If Barbie were a woman she
would be 7' tall with feet so small
and breasts so large that she would
fall forward under the weight of
her own composition. But it's not
her fault she's plastic.
I don't want to be plastic...or
do I? They represent her as the
excuse for sexual violence against
women. All around us, the media,
ads, and even in our socialised
minds, the normative expectation
perpetuates. She's always sexy,
and that makes men hot. But if it's
this hyper-sexualised image we
seek to attain, and they hold the
power, then how will he know not
to rape her?
It's all learned; soldiers for sex.
We sell, you buy. I always want
to be beautiful, and that's ok, but
my beauty and sexual liberation
has to be according to my standards, not yours. You created my
hegemony and put silicone in my
breasts. You told him to think with
his penis and the media will do
the rest.
They hang in bags, ready for
purchase, our department store
red light district. They say it's her
fault, 'she was asking for it'
But if most rapes are planned
then whose fault is it? @
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Centre for Women's and Gender Studies
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Friday, 9 March, 2007 THE UBYSSEY
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no shame since 1918
Womyn: why the Y?
by Jesse Ferreras
Writing about this subject isn't
easy for me. Unaccustomed to feminist literature that I would later be
taught to analyse and pick apart in
third and fourth year theory courses, as a second-year student at UBC,
I first looked upon the spelling of
"womyn" when walking past the
AMS Social Justice Centre. I felt a
twinge of discontent against what I
thought was a pretentious move by
only a few individuals in the AMS to
appropriate a well-ingrained word
in the English language and make
it their own. Three years onward,
after gorging on feminist theory
and history in film and classical
studies courses, I'm still divided
as to what I think about it.
The Wikipedia entry about
"womyn," citing the Oxford English Dictionary, sets one of its earliest uses in 1975, in reference to
a "womyn's festival" described in a
lesbian publication. In the Ubyssey
women's issue from 2005, writer
Milena DeVito explains the term
as a way to distance its significance
from a patriarchal social construct.
In reference to the AMS Womyn's
Centre she writes, "we believe that
people have the right to choose
their own gender expression."
One can deduce from these
definitions that the motivation to
spell "womyn" with a "y" in place
of an "a" or an "e" is similar to that
behind Laura Mulvey's landmark
essay "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema." Ms Mulvey speaks
of the construction of the feminine
in cinema as a construct of the
"male gaze," suggesting that this
gaze functions to dilute the feminine in narrative cinema and turn
the female figure into an object of
pleasure, a tendency motivated by
what the author calls a "castration
It's constructs like this that
"womyn" rebels against, but I'm
still a little skeptical about using
"womyn" if we are to assume that
it's being used as a way to achieve
gender equity—that's something
I believe unconditionally. Using
language to differentiate oneself I
think is more isolationist than it
is egalitarian. I'm not certain the
attempt to bring an alternative
spelling into common parlance
will catch on. Additionally, I feel
it promotes separation completely
between male and female, rather
than interaction and dialogue.
Egalitarianism advocates suggests
connection between the two parties, not alienation.
Nevertheless, that the word
even exists is symptomatic of an
ongoing uneasiness with the state
of gender equity. It is terribly unfortunate to think that there are
some who feel so subjugated that
they would need to change their
own language to show it. As an expression of frustration, I support
the spelling of "womyn." I equally
support it as a sociological method
of re-appropriating the word from
what has been seen as a patriarchal construct. But I worry that its
use will serve to alienate, more
than equalise the genders—and
isn't equalisation something that
feminist movements have been
attempting to achieve in the first
place? 9
Stick it to the system, not just the man
by Matthew Jewkes
Let's say that men are as oppressive as the most hardcore feminist
would claim. The paradox of this
is, the more I, as a man, am oppressive, the more oppressed and
distorted I become as a person.
Take an oft-used example:
Perhaps I am unable to relate to
women as anything other than as
sex objects. Certainly this is going
to have a horrible impact on the
women I encounter. However, it
is also going to have a significant
impact on me. Unable to relate to
women as full, whole, human beings, I am going to become a significantly warped individual.
It is from a perspective like
this that I would argue that the
"patriarchal system," or the patterns of power that men both
possess and use over women and
the culture in general, is as distorting and abusive to men as it is of
women. Not that I am apologising
for abusers. If one person is abusing another, then the first priority
is to take care of the victim—to get
them out of the situation and into a
safe and supportive environment.
But I think that for feminism to
continue to be effective today, it is
going to have to take into consideration the fact that the "patriarchal system" which feminists are
so fond of attacking is as distorting and abusive to men as it is to
Certainly, over the past century
or so, feminism has created many
opportunities for women within
our culture. Gone are the days
when a woman in Canada was not
supposed to go to university, or
when a woman doctor or lawyer
was considered scandalous. But it
should not be forgotten that there
is still so much violence, oppression, and injustice against wom
en. Violence by intimate partners
in the US is the country's leading
cause of injury for middle-aged
It seems like the feminist
"movement" is fading. Recent closures to women's centers around
Canada, and the questioning of
whether there even needs to be a
committee for the status of women
are two large-level indications of
this. The support from men, too,
is diminishing. In the 60s and 70s
the response from many young
men was basically pro-feminist.
More recently, however, there
seems to be a growing backlash
among men against feminism for
being "anti-men."
It is therefore quite clear that
feminism needs to take a different
tack. Up until now, its focus seems
to have been to fight for women's
rights within the "patriarchal so-
cio-cultural system." By asserting
themselves against men, women
have, to an extent, been able to assert their rights. Now women can
fly fighter planes, argue in courts
of law, and manage billion-dollar
Butone question feminism originally posed, and one that remains
quite valid, is "should we have
fighter planes, courts of law, and
multi-billion-dollar companies?"
In asserting themselves against
men in the men's system, women
have found some power within
that system. But perhaps it is time
for feminism, and women in general, to both oppose these things
and try building an alternative.
The funny thing is, if women
were to take this approach, chances are that they would find many
willing men on their side. Because
there are likely as many men as
women who, deep down, want out
of the "patriarchal system" which
is so destructive to us all. 9 »ms
The 2007 / 2008 AMS Executive
is looking forward to working with
and for the students of UBC.
If you have ideas on how to make the AMS better,
or issues that you would like to see addressed,
please contact any one of us at:
Jeff Friedrich
AMS President - 604 822 3972 - president@ams. ubc.ca
Brendon Goodmurphy
AMS Vice-President - Academic and University Affairs - 604 8223092 - vpacademic@ams.ubc.ca
Sarah Nieman
AMS Vice-President - Administration -6048223961 - vpadministration@ams.ubc.ca
Matthew Naylor
AMS Vice-President - External Affairs - 604 822 2050- vpexternal@ams.ubc.ca
Brittany Tyson
AMS Vice-President - Finance - 604 822 3973
Shagufta Pasta
AMS Executive Coordinator of Student Services - 604 822 9949 - services@ams.ubc.ca
Molson Campus Shake-Up!
feat. Thornley, Social Code
w/ host Nicole Arbour
Thu 15.03.07-Pit Pub
Fri 23.03.07 - GALLERY LOUNGE
Visit www.ams.ubc.ca/events
for more event information.
Looking for someone to listen? KB*
Speakeasy has now expanded the Peer Support Line service      SSSf^Prl K PI 9V
(604 822-3700) to 24 hours a day Monday to Friday QjgjTLwo"■ m»™«°<<• ~>*w./
and 8pm to 8am on the weekends.
Also, feel free to come by our desk on the
North side of the SUB concourse for drop-in peer support and
information between the hours of Sam to 8pm Monday to Friday.
Interested in a Challenging position with the AMS?
We will be calling for applications for our
Service Coordinator positions in the near future.
Watch this space for details.
Bring your resume
meet your future employers!
March 14th-15th.10am-4pm
m [\4\ 't^fllf^l^f:,   [[ii!Iii,M![£!lL,?°°Z THEJJBYSSEY
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Students'Union Building
SWAP | Working Holidays
The Ubyssey dares you
to "Crack The Code*'.
One of the fascinating elements
in the investigation is the fact that
some of the Zodiac killers ciphers
have not yet been solved by law
enforcement. In fact, the first of
the killers' codes was solved by the
public only after it was published in
the San Francisco Bay newspapers.
Can you crack the code?
This is the actual evidence from
the case files and we will give
you a copy of the book by Robert
Graysmith with info on the film and
updated evidence to help you solve
the Zodiac code.
Come to the Ubyssey office in SUB Room 23 if you want to take up the
challenge. There is only a limited number of the book available.
PHQENrx^    Subject to Classification    ZodincMovie.com
Listen to your elders
Lessons women wished they'd been told
Illustration by
Michael Bround
"Men are pricks...Get your mammogram done. Many people
—Susan, 52, sales representative
"When it comes to men, you can't change him."
—Rhona, 42, sales representative
"Finishing your degree, that's important—That's what I regret
the most."
—Stephanie Ross, 64, UBC employee
"One of the concepts that I wish I would have gotten about
boys is: just because he likes you, do you like himLI think it
speaks to women in general, what do you really want?"
—Lisa, 36, vendor
"First of all know your generic culture. I find that young
women in Canada lack generic culture.Jt's a way
of explaining that they should know more history,
travel more, being in contact with different cultures,
be exposed to women around the world and get more
exposure and that I think helps to understand better what
women need and help women better to choose their
career because some younger women don't know what
to do so they chooses something like literature that
they don't go anywhere and I won't say it's not
good but there is so much need of women in other
—Syliva Bascou-Vallarino, 50, Language professor
"Think about   what your values are and realise that...
sometimes there is a big tradeoff [for them]."
—Sarah Parry, 45, sessional instructor
"Learn how to be happy with yourself. If there is anything
investment you can make at your age find a passion,
something that fills you up almost as much as that call from
that guy, or that girl, whatever you're into, because when
you're all caught up in that you have nothing left to put into
your passion but if your passion is first you'll carve a space
for it."
—Carol Naylor, 42, UBC employee
"Don't be afraid, take some risks, and step out of your comfort
—Paula Korby, 42, High school teacher
"Nellie McClung, a pioneer of women's right to vote, advised
women in the early 1900s—'never apologise, never explain.'
A hundred years later there is still truth in her message.
Women should never apologise for who they are and what
they believe in. For women entering politics this is especially
true. For everyone, standing up for what you believe in,
needs no apology or explanation."
—Catherine Evans, Candidate for Nomination, Liberal
Party of Canada, Vancouver Quadra
"It would be the same advice I would give to anyone...be
compassionate and just, live your life for others."
—Dr Jennifer Wade, 60+, Member of the Liu Institute
"Think in terms of people. We don't just push for women. We
have so many possibilities. What you can do in your work, in
your life, it's important to give something."
—DrMerva Cottle, 78, Physiologist
—coordinated by Champagne Choquer and Colleen Tang THE UBYSSEY Friday, 9 March, 2007
uuyfn£kv*y iAkuA
Wlerathe sua don't
Anal insight
by Kathryn Stewart
If you've been in a relationship for more than
two years, you've probably had anal sex. This
has been a long running theory, supported
by unsubstantiated evidence—the majority
of which has been uncovered from friends
while they were less than sober.
The theory, however, is not completely
off base. A recent Center for Disease Control National Survey of Family Growth found
that 38.2 per cent of men between 20 and
39 and 32.6 per cent of women aged 20-44
have engaged in heterosexual anal sex. Compared with the stats of the same survey done
in 1992, showing 25.6 per cent of men and
20.4 percent of women engaging in anal intercourse, it becomes clear that something is
going on in the bedrooms (or elsewhere) of
hetero couples, more distinctly, married or
co-habitating hetero couples—the highest engagers in anal sex were shown as those that
live together and are currently in a long term
relationship. Durex, which also conducted
a survey in 2005 and found similar results,
with 35 per cent of people in similar age
brackets as engaging in anal sex.
While the basis of the original theory was
based on the experiences of young women,
it did not provide a reason as to why anyone
would want to have anal sex. Most women, it
seems, had anal sex because their boyfriends
wanted to and being the open-minded young
women that they are, they allowed them. A
random survey of 20-something men (which
was also conducted by myself and was by no
means official) suggested two reasons for this
growing desire of straight men to "plunder
the booty" of their mates. They want to go
where no man has gone before. If interpreted
beyond these surface reasons and on a psychologically deeper level, anal sex can be an
act of physical domination and control.
Sue Johanson, of the Sunday Night Sex
Show, and a popular lecturer to the junior
residences of UBC, theorised that anal sex is
gaining in popularity because of its facility to
become an act of power, control or domination. This is especially because the partner on
the receiving end is much more vulnerable to
pain and injury than the partner on the giving end. Of course this interpretation is not
all encompassing. Anal sex can also be put
into the same league as sex in a public place
or a threesome, as a taboo sexual act, people
enjoy being naughty and going against cultural sexual norms. Anal sex is also pursued
as an act of general sexual curiosity.
While Johanson doubts claims of loosened rectums and the growth of "piles" (hem-
moroids) due to anal sex, there is a menagerie of stuff that could go wrong, enough to
entice any pirate away from their potential
booty. Aside from the heightened risk of STIs
when engaging in unprotected anal sex, serious physical injury is also a relevant concern.
The anus does not produce any form of lubrication. The rectum and anus were designed
for waste to come out, not for foreign objects
to go in. Thus, due care and attention to matters of force and lubrication are pertinent
or rectal tearing will occur. This is bad. The
most gruesome of potential physical ailments
associated with rectal tearing is the fistula. A
fistula occurs when a fissure develops within
the anus and becomes infected. This infection
may extend through the bowel wall and form
a channel from the rectum into the vagina.
What eventually occurs is that all excremen-
tal needs are met through a single orifice.
If so many things can go awry with anal
sex, then what do people who engage in anal
sex on a frequent basis do? A UBC student
who requested the pseudonym Gay Cowboy
was a good source from which to start. As both
an initiator and receiver of anal intercourse
he shared common sense information on the
subject. He surprisingly commented that,
given a sexual alternative, he would probably
do something other than anal sex. While he
did suggest that he is very particular about
the abilities of his partners, anal sex was not
the be all and end all of his personal sexual
encounters. However, if engaging in anal intercourse, he proscribes a towel and an anal
douche. The anal douche (which looks like
turkey baster) functions like a mini enema.
In his words, "it will get everything up there...
out." A round with the anal douche prior to
attempting anal sex will give assurance that
nothing "up there" will come out on your
sheets, floor or sofa. Also, after engaging in
anal sex the rectal muscles will loosen and it
does become momentarily difficult to maintain control. A towel is recommended just in
case. Not a white one though.
On the other side of the fence, what about
heterosexual anal sex in which the female is
penetrating the male? Just as anal sex in itself
has been enjoying recent popularity, businesses such as the Love Nest has indicated
an increase in the female usage of strap-ons
to penetrate their male partner. The thinking,
of course, is what is good enough for men is
good enough for women. It is easy enough
to imagine a deal being made between partners that if the man will allow himself to be
penetrated he can then penetrate his female
partner. Equal rights. Beyond coupled activities it may seem that hetero men are not only
becoming more interested in the backside of
their significant others, but also in their own.
The Aneros, a prostate simulation device that
promises to stimulate the prostate or "P-spot"
has been doctor and FDA approved, accorded with the newly linked benefits of prostate
stimulation and the prevention of prostate
cancer. Offering a non-ejaculatory orgasm,
the device has branched out from the origi
nal model and now offers multiple sizes and
What follows is that it seems more socially
acceptable for men to both talk about anal sex
and engage in anal sex with their partners.
While many hetero men may as of yet become squeamish about having anything put
into their bum, many have no qualms about
discussing and attempting to penetrate their
significant other's rear. While female initiated anal sex does occur it seems, from this perspective, as more the exception than the rule.
Although there are women out there that undeniably enjoy anal sex, they are somewhat
difficult to locate, and even more difficult to
get a sober commentary from. Women are
in a vulnerable position with their partners
during anal intercourse. It is well within her
range for a woman to feel dominated. While
the modern woman demands respect and
equal footing within her relationships, anal
sex can turn it all on its head. This act has the
potential to remove women from their equal
status and into a position of vulnerability and
Johanson identifies seven "rules" if engaging in anal sex. In sum, gentleness, good
lubrication, protection, respect for the word
"no," and respect for the words "never again"
are a must.
While sexual experimentation can occur
within a wide array of situations, pursuing
anal sex requires a great deal of trust, be it
with someone you've known for ten minutes
or someone you've been with for ten years.
Anal sex creates a difficult conundrum for
women, especially when doing "it" for someone else. With questions of sexual liberation,
domination, submission and experimentation swirling around this practice, consider
the old Planned Parenthood motto: Know
what you are doing, think ahead, plan ahead,
and never let sex just happen. 9
yeah I'm talking
to you. There ain't
much time ieft to
ubyssey. bcca for
more information.
Cfiallenae, Create, "Empower
The University of British Columbia
Faculty of Arts
1896 East Mall, V6T 1Z1
Women's and Gender Studies is an exciting
interdisciplinary field of study drawing upon several
traditional disciplines that also makes links with the
community and real life issues. Undergraduate students
enjoy the opportunity to think critically about a number
of important concepts in a supportive and inclusive
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have commented that Women's and Gender Studies
courses are amongst the best they have ever taken.
They go on to careers in the public, non-profit and
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