Having spent the evening thinking about how to talk about changing or getting rid of porn altogether, this morning I read Zoe Williams' column, Conservative to the Core, and thought about conservatism from a whole different angle when linked to porn. Williams looks at new research that has come about 'Jafaican', the new slang that is apparently taking over cockney in London, a mix between Jamaican and African slang. She points out too that "there is in reality no racial demarcation and a good deal more Ali G posturing here than genuine Jamaican roots, and the chief uniting feature of Jafaican speakers is age (very young)."
But, she points out, we are already being told that it is just a matter of a new generation and to get with the picture instead of attempting to make any sort of comment about it:
But when you read the newspaper reports, you can smell the benign neutrality wafting off the page. "Listen here, chaps. When youngsters today say 'jamming', they mean hanging around! 'Nang' might not sound like a word to you and me, but it means good. 'Sket' is a loose woman, and 'bitch' continues to mean girlfriend - but sket seems to have replaced 'ho', which is now woefully out of date and used only by the rap community because it rhymes with so many things. 'Babymamma' has come and gone, to be overtaken by the old-fashioned sounding 'wifey'."
Language is a good demonstration of any culture and it's a pity that the feminist goal to create gender neutral language and non-sexist behavior through language has been mostly dropped by the feminism (no, I have not forgotten about Chiennes de Gardes, I said 'mostly') and obviously the rest of the world. It is so unfashionable to complain about being called 'babe', 'darling', 'sweetheart' - you're such a cold-hearted bitch for reacting to these things.
Williams' sees the conservatism in this language by the fact that it is replicating a two-tier system, with women on the lower half: "If youth culture is increasingly sexually conservative and two-tiered in its judgments, and increasingly portrays one gender as the property of the other, this will ultimately tell in the way women are treated, personally and professionally, when today's teenagers are in their prime." When we think of conservatism and feminism, we tend to think of the conservative attempts to retain 'family values' and a traditional stand on sexuality, which is why when feminism is associate with conservatism it is so frustrating. Williams' point thought the conservatice aspect of language is about retaining a system that describes women by their functions - whore, wife, sister, chaste...etc... It is a conservative tendency for women to only exist within these parameters, which is exactly what the problem is with tradication family values, they rely on women performing within their supposedly proper family roles.
Furthermore, Williams' is on my good list now for the following statement:
"...we seem to have no pride in the women's movement, which-in the absence of any civil rights movement or revolution - is probably the noblest public protest this country has seen."