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  1. Related Reviews and Shortlists
  2. Fifty Shades of Grey: what it means for men
  3. Fifty Shades Trilogy (Fifty Shades, #) by E.L. James

Some insisted that reading the book was harmless. Soon the series had sold 10 million copies within six weeks, and a friend told me there was a waiting list of over four hundred people for the book at her local library. And I think He let me feel the ground rumbling. It was now! Other than actually developing the manuscript, I knew I had one more bridge to cross.

I had to actually read the Fifty Shades series. My husband bought it for me, and we prayed that God would give me eyes to see it through His lens. I confess I secretly hoped that it would throw gas on my already steady sexual fire for my husband, Greg. The verdict? I needed Greg to hold me, but not in response to sexual arousal on my part. I needed him to hold me while I wept. I still see her reflection in the mirror every morning. And I pray every day that my own twenty-year old daughter will never experience anything remotely similar to what I did.

Yet, many have learned some the hard way that most fantasies are better left as fantasy—not reality! What a vicious cycle! In the cartoon, a woman is on her hands and knees on the sidewalk underneath a street light at night. Yes, I am aware that television has its content "standards. I certainly would not pretend there is no censorship in western society. I understand that we do censor some things.

Doing fine? That's debatable, of course : 4. I have heard of nuances, shades of grey, and "in between extremes of black and white. Let me rephrase my concern. No one talks about it. Art, however, is intended to inspire debate and dialogue regarding personal, social, and historical contexts, practices, and standards. I do realize that the term "art" is subjective. I believe we have far too much amusing, unreflective distractions on the whole, and a novel--which I have never read, admittedly--that inspires the discussion I've read here is important.

If you disagree with or want to soften the edges of the the content of the book, your focus is misplaced. Run a google search of all the books that have been banned in the United States. Typically, they are all commentaries on American society, upon which some of us evidently don't want to reflect. That in which we most see ourselves most insults Your argument here has some logical conclusions flirting with censorship, which--as an English teacher--are disconcerting.

For some, art is intended to challenge prevailing sensibilities. And that is a subject to passionately explore in a classroom milieu. Tipper Gore once argued that Ozzy's "Suicide Solution" encouraged young adults to kill themselves, when it was, in fact, a condemnation of such an action.

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Be careful. Art is often intended to violate the status quo--sometimes in ways that help us recognize our own baggage and prejudices. The world is not flat. I agree completely. For example, I think Eminem's song "Love the Way You Lie" falls into the same category; chastised for promoting something which, in fact, it was condemning.

Yeah, but such tactics are often used very successfully by anti-socials, I'm not familiar with that work specifically, I'm just saying. I have read the books and I share Jennifer's concerns about the message it sends, particularly to individuals who are less experienced in the realities of relationships. For others, the fantasy aspect of the story leads them to be disappointed i. My theory as to why women gobble this stuff up is that in the end of every Harlequin romance novel and in the end of Fifty Shades, the woman wins.

She gets what she wants. She "conquers" the alpha male through beauty, sexuality, tolerance and LOVE. These difficult, remote and brutish men are tamed but not too much because they are so IN LOVE with these ridiculously desirable women. These messages go right to the teenage girl brain housed in each of us, we want to be free to be ourselves sexually and otherwise and the books depict a woman's fight to be herself regardless of where the oppression originates , we want to be beautiful, we want to be desired and we want to be loved so powerfully that it transforms.

I agree that censorship is not the answer. I like our freedoms and fantasy is very healthy and can be helpful in many ways. Articles like Jennifer's highlighting concerns and pointing out the realities of relationships are probably the best defense we have against inadvertently harming ourselves with too much or misused fantasy.

The book is a book of fantasy. It is not oppression that hold women back sexually; it's personality, sexual drive, reality, and mainly themselves.


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When the truth is told, most women live through the characters in the story, but could never live like them. The same women who read these books could never find the same satisfaction if similar events unfolded in their lives. Some may even act out for a week or so and loss interests do the reality of time, senses, and personality. With few exceptions, women writers build their stories on a predictable list of generic complaints. They are:. Bad men treat women badly. Good men treat women badly.

Men do not understand that all women are creatures of fine intelligence, character, and sensitivity. Life in any society debases women and fails to support their physical and emotional needs and desires.


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Men impose themselves on women's bodies and inflict abuse and pain. One or a combination of these grievances is the tension and the reason for every romance novel and for most of the novels from the finer women writers. They are also the basic grievances of the feminists.

Any female, be she a fourteen-year-old cheerleader or a forty-year-old feminist, knows the feelings. With feminacentrism now so clearly a dominant political force in both parties, the larger implications of the no-win for men bind created by just the first two items on that list are what concern me. The Domestic Violence Industrial Complex thrives on the exploitation of women's misfortune, and will always act in its own self-interest at the expense of making things worse for women.

This doesn't concern me so much as that it does so by making things worse for men, who are trapped in the crossfire of the two parties trying to shove each other out of the so they can impress and play faux savior to women. It's not a war against women which is going on, but a war for women. Neither party has anything to offer to men except the command to Man Up: Ask not what your women can do for you, but, instead, what you can do for your women!

Thanks everyone for your comments. They've inspired me to write another piece; you can read it here. I look forward to the continued conversation! Hamady's argument--which you nicely encapsulated in the quotation--has some logical fallacies. It 'sounds' rational, but to say that awareness leads to experimentation is an incredible jump. Thanks for your comment anonymous. The statement is indeed an incredible jump Clearly awareness doesn't always dictate action. Jennifer Hamady specializes in emotional issues that interfere with optimal self-expression and is the author of The Art of Singing.

What a gift it is, to see each new day, the world, and ourselves newly. Lessons from the singing world on self-expression, confidence and peace. Bringing live performance—and life—back to the recording studio. Back Psychology Today. Back Find a Therapist. Back Get Help.

Related Reviews and Shortlists

Back Magazine. Subscribe Issue Archive. Back Today. When Should You Share a Secret? What Is Catastrophizing? Jennifer Hamady Finding Your Voice. Follow me on Twitter. Friend me on Faceook. Connect with me on LinkedIn. Enter 50 Shades of Grey. But it is not hot in reality.

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Fifty Shades of Grey: what it means for men

And I am very, very concerned. Submitted by CW on August 29, - pm. That is a LOT of women reading books in which the woman is taken by force by a dominating man! Submitted by Jennifer Hamady on August 30, - am. When it comes to sex, women experience shaming Submitted by Anonymous on August 30, - am. Well said. Thanks for Submitted by Jennifer Hamady on August 30, - am. Thank you! Submitted by CW on September 6, - am.

I will go read it today and for those who are afraid of " censorhip" Submitted by CW on September 6, - pm. Thank you Jennifer!! I saw something depressing - not in Jennifer Hamady's article - but at Huffington's post after I read it I saw a "suggested story" and clicked on the link, it was about Ann Coulter last I checked there were only two comments for Jennifer Hamady's article Thank you Submitted by Jennifer Hamady on September 7, - am. Hi, CW, 1. Yes, I am aware Submitted by Anonymous on September 7, - pm.

Fifty Shades Trilogy (Fifty Shades, #) by E.L. James

Your argument here has some Submitted by Anonymous on August 29, - pm. For Submitted by Jennifer Hamady on August 29, - pm. Any examples??? Submitted by Anonymous on September 7, - pm. A response to but why are women? Submitted by ALR on August 30, - am.