Friday, 30 November 2007

Rearranging the World

I've been going around and around in my head about something, and it's one of those things that's ... if only I could explain this to people! It's a neat trick! I! ... but the words are so open for misinterpretation. I know if I tried to say it, tried to make the argument somewhere, that people would latch on to one thing and completely miss the point of what I'm driving at. It's a Mystery experience, and those are notoriously difficult to convey.

But I'm thinking about 'objectification', in its various forms; the specific bit that's relevant to my kink is the specifically sex-object kind, but I don't think that what I'm looking at is limited to that subset.

A lot of people look at the notion of objectification -- of, hrrr, for lack of better phrasing, constraining interactions with the person-treated-as-object to those appropriate for the type of object for duration of the scene or other period, let's define my terms -- and see something horrible. The cutting-away of everything not a part of the object, a reduction of person-to-thing-to-be-used, ignoring anything that doesn't fit in that, which can include dreams, aspirations, basic humanity ....

And when I look back on the ways I've been treated as a sex object nonconsensually in my past -- much of which is, y'know, junior high school crap, those horrible early-teens years -- it is something horrible. Minimising, dehumanising, disrespectful to self-as-person. All that shit, I understand the thing.

And that has nothing to do with my experience of objectification in a kink context.

I was talking with my liege about this the other day, trying to grasp at words to go at the mystery, and he talked about rearranging the world, resizing it. Like how in certain sexual situations, everything outside the bed just stops registering as relevant, doesn't matter to the situation at all. Which can be a way of finding a respite from a relentlessly awful world, for a little while: resize the world.

The sex slave thing is resizing the world and also resizing me. All that other stuff exists, outside the edge of the mindspace, folded up and implicit in my self but not relevant -- the whole question of acceptance, of love, of external value, winds up being evaluated on the success at performing the functions of the objectification.

Which, again, could be seen as an awful thing, but ...

... those folded-in bits aren't rejected, they're still there. Which means that the fact that it's possible to have a fairly clearcut success in the objectified role, a fairly black-and-white pass/fail thing, makes the whole horrible tangle of 'am I worthy as a person' fade to the background: it makes it possible to receive, hear, and believe an unqualified "Yes."

And that unqualified 'yes' doesn't stay constrained to the smaller world. It expands out with the boundaries of reality.

I sit here and look at this experience and say, "This! This is cool! This is useful! I mean, aside from 'this is good sex', this is neat!" and ... have no idea how to convey it to people who don't already know what I'm talking about.

It would be nice to be able to do, sometimes. But talking about narrowing the world like that is just offering up a hook for the antis to snag onto and haul, as far as I can tell. Which leaves me feeling awfully sad.


Devastating said...

I enjoyed this post. This kind of stuff is really hard for me to work out in my head.

ellefromtheeast said...


As much as this can be put into words (which isn't much, because it's usually a nonverbal experience), it sounds like you and I experience this very similarly.

I get it.

Anonymous said...

The cutting-away ofDiablo 3 Items all things not just a portion of the object, some sort of decrease in person-to-thing-to-be-used, dismissing anything that isn't going to fit in of which, which could include things like desires,GW2 Gold hopes, essential humanity