Feminist Sensibilities and Yoga Booty Ballet

1) Feminist Sensibilities

5M tells us that M: "tolerated my feminist sensibilities, even if he didn't agree with them"

In 2005, what sort of man merely merely tolerates feminist sensibilities? Not a confident one, I'm thinking. An informed, confident man should be embracing feminist sensibilities. Freedom and equality and none of this crap about, "well, I wouldn't want a tiny little woman rescuing me from a burning building." You wouldn't, you imbecile? You'd not want a four and a half foot tall 92-year-old rescuing you either, but if I showed up and pulled you out, you'd be damn glad in the end, wouldn't you?

I came across a nice but longish definition of what feminism means to one woman the other day. If you can find anything in there that a person could rightly disagree with, I'd like to know what it is.

Perhaps M and 5M come into conflict on the objectifying women issue. Conchie brought it up the other day referring to the lcp's comments on women in their 20s. She told us: Feminist thought says this is simply the "but I'm the superior one here" types going down with a defiant struggle.

Maybe it would be easier if we chose sex partners the way we chose jobs, apartments or cars. You know, see what the options are, weigh the pluses and minuses, make an offer and see if it's accepted. But instead, there's all this compulsion and the smallest things release all these chemicals and hormones so that we're acting on instinct as much as anything. I have two scientist friends who've been married since 1983 and he says that what hooked him on her was the way the pink pockets on the back of her pants moved when she walked.

While "objectifying" eliminates all manner of qualities of a woman -- her mind, intellect, character, creativity, etc -- it's not all about creating inequality and limiting women's freedom.

2) Yoga Booty Ballet

In the past year or two, the Chair and I have observed that Yoga seems to be the in-exercise for women in Ottawa. Pilates is over. Kick-boxing peaked before it really caught on. Belly dancing got the feminist makeover five or ten years ago, but either Western women couldn't get the gyrations happening or they felt silly in those costumes, I don't know, but it didn't hit the big time.

In the winter, some of the celebrity women on talk shows had started talking about doing aerobic strip-tease. "It's not for the men, it's for us," they'd say, "although my husband does seem to really enjoy it." Several weeks ago, one of my friends happily told me that she and her roommate have started taking Strip -Toning lessons. They're thinking about installing a pole in the rec room to practice on.

(Being the cultural anthropologist that I am, I suggested I should observe a practice or two, but I have not yet gained the necessary trust and confidence of the study population. )

This morning I discovered that some exercise genius has combined yoga and strip tease -- Yoga Booty Ballet. I saw part of an infomercial for it this morning while I ate my breakfast. (I am not making this up.) They've got yoga moves, like upward-facing dog and downward-facing dog. And they've got some aerobic, shake your booty moves.
Upward-facing dog
Downward-facing dog And they've got moves that combine the two.

One is called "upward-facing beetle". I tried to find a photo of it on Google image search, but I just don't have time to wade through that much porn this morning. It's like a combination of the upward and downward facing dog. Face and booty both up, knees slightly bent and then the pelvis is moved quickly up and down.

Which brings me to my conclusion: The issue of objectification is complicated for many of us men and I hope you women will from time to time cut us some slack.

1 comment:

4th Dwarf said...

I just came across an interesting account of a yoga retreat at Hanna Rockhead's blog. It looks like she'd have been better off with some Booty Ballet