Oct 152021
  • CBC’s Ideas podcast has a series called Body Language. One episode talks about the “the right to sex“, the thorny issue of sexual ethics and politics. In the BDSM world, we tend to treat consent as the be-all and end-all of sexual ethics, but that leaves issues of sexism, racism, transphobia, classism and so on, unaddressed.
  • The Official Bettie Page Podcast, episode 5, discusses the 2005 biopic, The Notorious Bettie Page, and some other documentary and biopic film projects about the iconic pinup and bondage model.
  • The Rialto Report covers the 1977 launch of the Ultra Room at the Mitchell Brothers’ O’Farrell theatre in San Francisco, a lesbian bondage show surrounded by two-way mirrors. This includes an interview with the room’s first headliner, porn star C.J. Laing, and photos.
  • A Refinery29 post by Gina Tonic asks what it means to be a bottom. “…the labels ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ are often used interchangeably with the labels ‘dom’ and ‘sub’ – but is this always true?”
  • 20 years ago, Fetish Diva Midori published The Seductive Art of Japanese Bondage, probably the first book published in English on Japanese bondage. Since then, kinbaku/shibari has grown immensely in popularity outside Japan, and some kinksters practice it exclusively. Spectrum Boutique interviews Midori about this pioneering project.
Sep 202021
Aug 152021
Jun 272021
Jun 172021
  • The Leather Archive & Museum in Chicago celebrates it’s 30th anniversary, as told in the Chicago Reader, which talks about staying operational during COVID and being more diverse and inclusive.
  • Sleek magazine talks about the costumes Karl Lagerfeld designed for the 1976 film Maitresse (previously discussed), and says that the men in the BDSM scenes were real-life members of Paris’ Scene.
  • The new British TV biography, Ann Boleyn, not only progressively casts black actors in a historical story, but includes hints of bisexuality and BDSM sexuality in the title character’s relationship with King Henry VIII, says Radio Times.
  • It’s June, and that means Pride Month, which means another round of the perennial debate over the presence of kink in Pride events, as XTRA magazine shows. VICE magazine says that the debate needs to be retired in favor of community solidarity against rising transphobia. The Atlantic says “the discourse is a strange sign of progress“.
  • The SF Gate examines the history of the landmark Armory building in San Francisco, once the home of Kink.com’s adult video production facilities and the company’s trademark. “The idea that a deviant sexuality would exist in plain sight was anathema to the growing movement for queer respectability.”
  • Though it doesn’t touch on black as the fetish colour par excellance, Nautilus’ “The Reinvention of Black” does cover the technological history of producing black dyes and paints, striving for the elusive true absence of reflected light, and how that affected the arts.
May 172021
Apr 192021
Mar 152021
Feb 162021
Jan 182021
  • I’ve talked before about the role of kinky people in the culture wars, and how kinksters get dragged into conflicts whether they want to be involved or not. Case in point: Blaire White is an alt-right Youtuber who, despite being a transwoman herself, posts a lot of videos criticizing other trans people for not being the right kind of trans. She’s extended this criticism to other people with non-normative sexualities. On December 15, 2020, White posted a video titled “‘I Identify as a Dog’..Okay, Bro.” This was a ten-minute clip of her commenting and criticizing on a Snapchat video documentary about a transman who does puppyplay. White is using this as a vehicle to push the “I identify as a helicopter” anti-trans canard, making it sound like if we recognize gender diversity, we will have to accept all kinds of bizarre identities. This is despite the fact that the transman in the video never says he “identifies” as a dog, or thinks of himself as “really” a dog. White also insinuated that the couple in the video are also committing bestiality because they own real dogs. This might seem to be a tempest in a teapot, but White has over 900,000 subscribers on YouTube, and this particular video got over 200,000 views. Once again, kinksters have been used for shock value.
  • Kinky Youtubers Kat Blaque and Evie Lupine have posted videos countering Blaire White’s misrepresentations.
  • A short piece on the history of the iconic Muir cap or leatherman’s cap. I’m curious when and how this particular item of fetish fashion began to appear on female dominants.
  • The Elephant in the Hot Tub blog has its own take on the history of fetishes.
  • Another piece on how the kink scene is adapting to the pandemic.
  • A Psychology Today article says that kink education is necessary, especially for clinicians. It cited a 2012 study which found that 25 per cent of clinicians automatically pathologized kink.
  • Meanwhile, another study debunks the idea that kink is the result of childhood trauma.
  • The Stop Internet Sexual Exploitation Act (SISEA) is another clumsy, moral-panic-based piece of legislation that would do more harm than good to sex workers and content creators.
  • The People’s Story Project has an essay by Bakang Akoonyatse on growing up black, queer and kinky in Botswana, which also talks about the sexual revolution in South Africa and Nigeria, instigated by performers and educators.