Excerpt on female flashers from Exposing Phallacy
Female flashers are a brazen lot. Sharing their accounts of flashing experiences and pictures on exhibitionist forums, they tell of cycling without underwear to ‘accidentally’ flash men; teasing teenagers in shops with glimpses of their vaginas, contriving to make it appear accidental by bending over to look through racks of books; they lie with legs splayed and vaginas shaved at nudist resorts; post pictures of themselves in chatrooms, their backs to the camera, bent over to reveal their vaginas; press their breasts against the camera, imploring men to show their appreciation by clicking on the ‘like’ button and delighting in comments about them shooting their load thinking about what they want to do to them; they leave the house naked, hiding when they encounter a man; wear skirts that blow up in the wind and loose tops that fall open when they lean forward. Some begin as children, enjoying being looked at by male relatives and parents’ friends. They arrange meetings with strangers to watch each other masturbate in the back of cars; campaign bare-breasted for the same right as men to be topless in public; and fantasise about being locked outside, naked, and about men watching and getting turned on by them masturbating in public.
It’s an exciting experience, a turn-on and an urge on which they feel compelled to act. The talk is of “slick slits” and “throbbing clits”. As a presentation of female sexuality, it bypasses the dabbling in soft porn so rampant in our culture and moves straight on to hardcore. There is no posing in Playboy t-shirts with breasts pushed up and jeans worn low to reveal g-strings; no glossed lips or tottering in heels wearing get-up said to be empowering by girls, sexualised at an increasingly young age, who have little real idea of the implications of their actions and are unlikely to be able to handle the situations in which their clothing and posturing may place them. These girls’ references are perkily plastic Barbie’s replacement, the Jenna Jameson doll (with removable clothes no less), modelled on a woman whose fortune has been made faking it – from her breasts to her orgasms. Pornography is not only ubiquitous; it has become a standard against which sexiness is measured. Over 3000 women auditioned for positions as bunnies in the London Playboy Club, opened in May 2011; Ann Summers, with its crotchless knickers and cheerleader outfits, had a turnover of £117.3 million in 2007-08; images of women, lust faked for the camera, are on the shelves of every supermarket; the trout pout is ridiculed, but plumped lips are a staple in the illusion of agelessness; and women’s magazines encourage a pornesque performance in the bedroom. But these plays on pornography don’t actually have anything to do with sex. They are the props of sexual desire, ersatz and a caricature of lust and sexiness, sexy but not sexual. Their enduring appeal is based on the ease with which they can be performed and their distance from the physicality of sex. Like the depiction of sex in mainstream cinema, the one thing conspicuously absent is genitals. There is no cunnilingus in Hollywood.