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1984.3 (Viva la Manvolucion) January 23, 2012

Posted by FCM in books!, PIV, politics, pop culture, WTF?.
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part one of this series on orwell’s “1984” is here.  part 2 is here.

this part was so orwellian i thought it deserved its own post.  i actually wondered for a moment how smart orwell really was: was he so intelligent that he slipped this one by, leaving it up to his readers to notice (or not)?  or was he just a common arrogant stooge, waxing poetic about his fantastical manvolution (dood-volution?) to other doods, the one that included putting girls and women in harms way by fucking them, and unabashed woman-hating misogyny stinking up every other page?

here is some of the dialog pillow-talk from one of orwells revolutionary PIV sessions.  from chapter 2 part 7:

‘Has it ever occurred to you,’ he said, ‘that the best thing for us to do would be simply to walk out of here before it’s too late, and never see each other again?’

‘Yes, dear, it has occurred to me, several times. But I’m not going to do it, all the same.’

‘We’ve been lucky,’ he said ‘but it can’t last much longer. You’re young. You look normal and innocent. If you keep clear of people like me, you might stay alive for another fifty years.’

‘No. I’ve thought it all out. What you do, I’m going to do. And don’t be too downhearted. I’m rather good at staying alive.’

‘We may be together for another six months — a year — there’s no knowing. At the end we’re certain to be apart. Do you realize how utterly alone we shall be? When once they get hold of us there will be nothing, literally nothing, that either of us can do for the other. If I confess, they’ll shoot you, and if I refuse to confess, they’ll shoot you just the same. Nothing that I can do or say, or stop myself from saying, will put off your death for as much as five minutes. Neither of us will even know whether the other is alive or dead. We shall be utterly without power of any kind. The one thing that matters is that we shouldn’t betray one another, although even that can’t make the slightest difference.’

‘If you mean confessing,’ she said, ‘we shall do that, right enough. Everybody always confesses. You can’t help it. They torture you.’

‘I don’t mean confessing. Confession is not betrayal. What you say or do doesn’t matter: only feelings matter. If they could make me stop loving you — that would be the real betrayal.’

She thought it over. ‘They can’t do that,’ she said finally. ‘It’s the one thing they can’t do. They can make you say anything — anything — but they can’t make you believe it. They can’t get inside you.’

‘No,’ he said a little more hopefully, ‘no; that’s quite true. They can’t get inside you. If you can feel that staying human is worth while, even when it can’t have any result whatever, you’ve beaten them.’

He thought of the telescreen with its never-sleeping ear. They could spy upon you night and day, but if you kept your head you could still outwit them. With all their cleverness they had never mastered the secret of finding out what another human being was thinking. Perhaps that was less true when you were actually in their hands. One did not know what happened inside the Ministry of Love, but it was possible to guess: tortures, drugs, delicate instruments that registered your nervous reactions, gradual wearing-down by sleeplessness and solitude and persistent questioning. Facts, at any rate, could not be kept hidden. They could be tracked down by enquiry, they could be squeezed out of you by torture. But if the object was not to stay alive but to stay human, what difference did it ultimately make? They could not alter your feelings: for that matter you could not alter them yourself, even if you wanted to. They could lay bare in the utmost detail everything that you had done or said or thought; but the inner heart, whose workings were mysterious even to yourself, remained impregnable.

impregnable?  really?  impregnability as in-vulnerablity.  impregnability as in-ability to be colonized, penetrated, taken by force.  and its used this way post-coitally, to boot.  one of them was surely still laying in a wet spot of sexual fluids, having had the revolutionary PIV, and this is how and where he uses this word.  ugh.

for men, the word “impregnable” can and does mean only one thing, and thats the way orwell used it: being impenetrable, and secure.  for women, it could mean *either* the thing orwell meant, *or* it could mean (essentially) the exact opposite.  for women reading orwell, we have to read what he wrote in context, then adjust our perspective so that we are seeing orwells world through mens eyes.  you know, the way it was intended.  this is true with the entire book of course, but his use of “impregnable” this way really hammers that one home.

after all the work the radfems have been doing on impregnability-as-vulnerability and what that means, i was actually struck dumb by orwells use of this one word.  i googled, having *my* perspective wrenched so violently from the one we have been cultivating here and across the radfem blogs this whole time.  i had actually forgotten that the word could be used that way.

im·preg·na·ble 1

adj.

1. Impossible to capture or enter by force: an impregnable fortress.
2. Difficult or impossible to attack, challenge, or refute with success: an impregnable argument.

im·preg·na·ble 2

adj.

Capable of being impregnated.

its nice that the female-only identified use of the word is the second definition too, which makes it kind of wrong for us to use it that way.  not wrong in the sense that its the wrong word, but we are *kind of* being tricky here, arent we, when we say it to mean one thing, when its most commonly used to mean the opposite.  seriously, my head still hurts.  im no language expert, and if im missing something here, im sure someone will tell me.

in the meantime, i plan to go back to reading the classics, and not wasting any more time on men, or male authors, even the allegedly “good” or revolutionary ones.  or maybe especially not them.

and now, back to our regularly scheduled programming!

1984.2 (PIV is Revolutionary) January 15, 2012

Posted by FCM in books!, entertainment, liberal dickwads, pop culture.
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part 1 of this series on orwell’s “1984” is here.

did i say that absolutely nothing happens in this book?  because it doesnt.  nothing.  happens.  thats inevitable i guess, in the telling of a story where its the oppressed class’s revolutionary thoughts and not their revolutionary actions or even planning of revolutionary actions that are at issue.  where the oppressed class is oppressed at the level of thoughtcrime, its enough to be branded a deadman (yes, this book wasnt written with women in mind, except as PIV-receptacles and blank screens for mens projections) and killed even, before actually doing anything revolutionary at all.

probably the only thing that really happened in this book is our doodly protagonist stealing away as often as possible to engage in the “revolutionary” PIV with a female revolutionary.  apparently, even though everyone was already having PIV, and there was no threat of a population shortage, and rape still happened, under certain circumstances PIV was revolutionary and wasnt just more of the same old shit: where it wasnt for procreative purposes (children notoriously ratted out their parents to the thought police, and were very effective social controls) and where the womans thoughts about it were positive.  gee, where have we heard that one before?  and, talk about thought police.

PIV being liberatory and revolutionary is an example of a reversal, and orwell was familiar with this concept but he goes down this idiotic road anyway.  other examples of reversals in orwells terrible dystopian nightmare that never happened: WAR IS PEACE; FREEDOM IS SLAVERY; IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.  all of which are very applicable to the problem of PIV and PIV-centric sexuality actually, for women.  making war on womens bodies and penis-as-weapon (and womens PIV-related anxiety, fear and trauma-bonding) and het compliance creates peace in the self, in the relationship and in society.  being free from men is really slavery to religious or radical feminist dogma.  being ignorant of womens history, in which the negative effects of PIV figure prominently and have caused and continue to cause incalculable suffering to women as a sexual class, around the world, or knowing about it but choosing to ignore it because its too big and too terrible to deal with…is empowering.  yes, fun-feminism is all very orwellian, and i *know* most of them have read this book, being the good progressives they are.  is it too much to ask that these connections be made?  i guess it is.

anyhoo, other of orwells concepts can be applied to the PIV issue as well.  the memory-hole, a garbage-chute into which “real” history is thrown and then a new history is rewritten to serve the interests of the state oppressors, seems to be the end of the road for all radical feminist PIV-criticism, which is overcome and erased by PIV-positive propaganda every couple of decades.  womens own, individual negative experiences of PIV, fallout from PIV and pregnancy-related complications (and of everything) end up falling down the memory-hole too.  the state oppressors are responsible not only for rewriting official history, but they also supply all the necessary unofficial propaganda too.  here, see for yourself (the entire book appears to be online.  this section is from ch. 1 part 4):

And the Records Department, after all, was itself only a single branch of the Ministry of Truth, whose primary job was not to reconstruct the past but to supply the citizens of Oceania with newspapers, films, textbooks, telescreen programmes, plays, novels — with every conceivable kind of information, instruction, or entertainment, from a statue to a slogan, from a lyric poem to a biological treatise, and from a child’s spelling-book to a Newspeak dictionary. And the Ministry had not only to supply the multifarious needs of the party, but also to repeat the whole operation at a lower level for the benefit of the proletariat. There was a whole chain of separate departments dealing with proletarian literature, music, drama, and entertainment generally. Here were produced rubbishy newspapers containing almost nothing except sport, crime and astrology, sensational five-cent novelettes, films oozing with sex, and sentimental songs which were composed entirely by mechanical means on a special kind of kaleidoscope known as a versificator.

they also produce porn.  and in orwell’s universe, the memory-hole and the “mutability of the past” serves not just a central function, but is the central tenet of this oppressive regime.  (p. 213).  its number-one.  which is an excellent reason, isnt it, to have men teaching womens history (and sexuality) to young women and men?  but i digress.

and dont even get me started on “Newspeak” in which the language is rewritten with the express purpose of narrowing the range of thought.  to literally make thoughtcrime impossible.  from ch. 1 part 5:

‘It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and adjectives, but there are hundreds of nouns that can be got rid of as well. It isn’t only the synonyms; there are also the antonyms. After all, what justification is there for a word which is simply the opposite of some other word? A word contains its opposite in itself. Take “good”, for instance. If you have a word like “good”, what need is there for a word like “bad”? “Ungood” will do just as well — better, because it’s an exact opposite, which the other is not. Or again, if you want a stronger version of “good”, what sense is there in having a whole string of vague useless words like “excellent” and “splendid” and all the rest of them? “Plusgood” covers the meaning, or “doubleplusgood” if you want something stronger still. Of course we use those forms already. but in the final version of Newspeak there’ll be nothing else. In the end the whole notion of goodness and badness will be covered by only six words — in reality, only one word. Don’t you see the beauty of that […]?

[…]

‘Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed, will be expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. Already, in the Eleventh Edition, we’re not far from that point. But the process will still be continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words, and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. Even now, of course, there’s no reason or excuse for committing thoughtcrime. It’s merely a question of self-discipline, reality-control. But in the end there won’t be any need even for that. The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect.

currently, we have “sex” (meaning PIV) and we have unsex, or sex-negative, if you prefer.  the transformation is almost complete.

stay tuned for part 3.

1984.1 (Surveillance) January 8, 2012

Posted by FCM in authors picks, books!, pop culture, radical concepts.
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i had the opportunity to read orwell’s “1984” recently.  i dont remember if i ever read it before, having blocked out most of my junior high school years, but i can say for certain that this time was my first time reading it through a radical feminist lens.  as everyone probably knows, 1984 is about a “dystopian depiction of totalitarian society” and is supposed to be SCAWY!  disturbing!  cautionary!  tale!  my response: meh.  welcome to my world, dood.  and, mary daly tells it better.

as everyone probably knows already…this classic tale is told from the perspective of some dood who fancies himself a part of the resistance to an oppressive totalitarian regime that places extreme controls on its citizens in both public and private.  this, even as he works every day creating propaganda including destroying the past, and rewriting history to serve the interests of the state.  literally rewriting it, as in changing facts, and destroying all existing evidence that things didnt really happen the way the state says it did.  once the proof of the actual history was destroyed, like first person accounts for example, where the witnesses were exterminated and the story rewritten, it was impossible to prove or even credibly maintain that it happened the way it really happened, *or* that there was any fraud afoot.  prove it!  and you cant.  (more on “the memory hole” to follow in part 2.  mary daly does *that* better too).

in the beginning, its our doodly protagonist’s *thoughts* that are allegedly revolutionary, and he very slowly and timidly moves to action which includes, apparently, taking an oath of willingness to do “anything” for the resistance, including perpetrating extreme violence without asking any questions about it (but without ever actually doing anything at all — srsly, absolutely nothing happened in this book); and having PIV.

wait, its revolutionary to have PIV?  when literally EVERYONE is already doing it under the current regime and they always have?  oh, okay!  and its especially revolutionary when the woman’s *thoughts* about it are positive.  talk about thought police.  are women ever going to stop falling for that one?  i hope so.

anyway, the surveillance aspect of orwell’s frightening totalitarian regime made me laff and laff.  as *women* are being surveilled constantly by men, and we live under a frightening totalitarian regime run by men, understanding that this story was intended to be fiction, and a uniquely cautionary tale that was nearly inconceivable to everyone until orwell put it to music struck me as funny mkay?  hello!  women cannot get away from men.  many women sleep with men, men are there all the time, all the time (even in orwell’s world, you were safe from scrutiny in the dark, as long as you were quiet.  not in womens world!  or, not in het womens world anyway).

when orwell wrote about the “telescreens” that were present in every single room, even the bathroom, he may as well have been talking about womens reality of being watched, scrutinized and thought-policed by men and patriarchal institutions 24/7.  in the case of the telescreens, it was very scawy that there was no way of knowing when you were being watched and when you werent, (meaning, whether an actual person was reviewing the video or not) so you had to assume you were being watched at all times and act accordingly.  so, in the interest of self-preservation, policing yourself became second nature.  how terrible would that be?  wow.  how dehumanizing.  how demoralizing.

in the presence of orwells telescreen, it was advisable to wear a pleasant facial expression at all times.  this was to quell suspicion that one was engaging in “thoughtcrime”.  ok that sounds familiar.  pictures of the loathsome “big brother” on every wall, in every home and workplace and public space (hmm, like artwork?  framed pics of boards of directors?  portraits of governors, justices, or the president?)  there were no laws, no written ones anyway, but everyone knew that certain activities and behaviors (and facial expressions!) were reasonably likely to result in negative outcomes.  wow, that sounds really terrible, doesnt it?  it frequently takes a brilliantly tortured male artist’s mind to come up with such implausible extremes that have never come to pass and hopefully never will.

the bad guys also infiltrated, baited, lied, and utilized networks of spies to surveil the oppressed class under orwells unthinkable totalitarian regime thats never happened, thank god.  and what the oppressed class was *thinking* was what the oppressors wanted to know.  not what they were doing, or planning to do, but what they were thinking, in their own private spaces and within their own hearts and minds.  now thats good totalitarian oppression.

interestingly, in orwell’s universe of over-the-top fearmongering, oppressive controls in both public and private, and harsh consequences for any deviance thoughtcrime, our doodly protagonist eventually figures out that capitulation doesnt work: once he had engaged in thoughtcrime, he was doomed and he knew it.  so, he just continued merrily down that road, come what may.  of course, having engaged in thoughtcrime and therefore branding himself a deadman, the proper thing to have done wouldve been to commit suicide before they came for him.  thats for anyone interested in being a good citizen under an oppressive totalitarian regime that surveils you, violates your obliterates the concept of privacy, and monitors not just your actions but your thoughts too.

of course, in orwells world, upon recognizing oneself as a deadman, it seems that its “human nature” to suddenly become interested in staying alive for as long as possible.

SO.  was orwell right about that?  and are women human?

stay tuned for part 2.