Jun 072016
 

Lying somewhere on the boundary between affectionate fetishism and domestic violence, spankings between lovers or would-be lovers were a staple of Hollywood romance movies. Jezebel has a pictorial and essay on the subject, by Andrew Heisel. This was reflected in real-life practices of the time, when husbands were expected to treat their lives like children.

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Sep 062010
 

From My Retrospace via Sociological Images, a discussion of the maledom-femsub spanking scene in the John Wayne-Maureen O’Hara Western film McLintock:

This image appeared prominently in publicity materials for the film, though in some cases Wayne is using what appears to be a small shovel or dustpan, while in others he is using his bare hand. Presumably this change is to “soften” the image, and perhaps strengthen the erotic connotations.

Also, in some images Wayne and O’Hara are alone, while in others there are plenty of observers, including even children. Often these scenes include a third party of one or more people observing the spanking, a common element of spanking literature and images, which adds elements of voyeurism and humiliation.

One particularly odd example image includes Superman using his x-ray vision to spy on, and control, his robot duplicate as it spanks Lois Lane.

My Retrospace says, “It seems to be all in good fun, right?” while Sociological Images says, “Lady spanking is a manifestation of the infantilization of women.” So how are we, from the perspective of 2010, supposed to view these images? Was this a coded/deflected reference to an uglier reality of spousal abuse in the mid-20th century? Or was this a plausibly deniable reference to sex? Or both?

Mar 292010
 

The Voice in the Corner spanking blog had a post on “the Markham Project.” “Miss Markham” seems to have been a retroactive creation, a shared name used in various femsub spanking writings by various hands over a considerable period of time. Some go as far back as the Englishwoman’s Domestic Magazine of the 1870s.

The Markham Project was apparently instigated by a professional governess and educationalist, Miss Elisabeth Markham between the 1880s and the early part of the 20th century.

Her aims were to encourage best practice in the training of governesses and the education of young women. She apparently advocated corporal punishment of young women over the age of 16 and unmarried ladies “up to a late age.” Her philosophy was to show that women were not frail creatures and that spanking, caning, birching and other “robust forms of punishment” were essential for discipline and the well-being of “females of all social conditions wishing to better themselves.”

I think a lot of spanking/flagellation erotica of the period imitated the debates over corporal punishment in school and domestic settings, both as protective imitation and as tongue-in-cheek parody. I very much doubt their ever were these flagellation-obsessed schools you read about.