Bad sex articles
All creative writing, Freud suggested , is a kind of foreplay. Accordingly, I sought to complicate the tone and language in various respects: Women are enculturated to be uncomfortable most of the time. I attempted to clear my name by writing about it in an essay called The Double, later published in my book The Uncanny. It was excruciating — both the writing and the confusion of authorial identity. Indeed, it filled me with foreboding: Amazon What goes for philosophy goes for other kinds of writing.
Women are enculturated to be uncomfortable most of the time. A good novel will always be about sex — though in ways that may not be obvious, even or especially to its author. I attempted to clear my name by writing about it in an essay called The Double, later published in my book The Uncanny. Coulda been a contender There is a key scene in the novel, however, involving a man and two women, and I was quite conscious, as I was writing it, of the phantom eyes of the Bad Sex award judges peering over my shoulder. But I was also keen to ensure that it was not so bad that I would end up being a contender for the Bad Sex award. This is so baked into our society I feel like we forget it's there. You are writing a splendid and coherent philosophical argument but, lo and behold, you are describing sexual intercourse. All creative writing, Freud suggested , is a kind of foreplay. It gets up to all sorts of stuff. Fortunately, in this respect at least, the novel passed without notice. Finally, crucially, she was free to leave. Thanks to psychoanalysis, we have a deeper appreciation than ever of the extent to which writing and the sexual or erotic are bound up with one another. As the critic Paul de Man once remarked: Why didn't she just get out of there as soon as she felt uncomfortable? That was part of the metafictional strangeness of the scene, for it involved without giving too much away here at least one Nicholas Royle. Once we move past the "few bad apples" argument and start to suspect that this is more a trend than a blip, our instinct is to normalize. And to ignore their discomfort. But if you're asking in good faith, if you really want to think through why someone might have acted as she did, the most important one is this: The Aziz Ansari case hit a nerve because, as I've long feared, we're only comfortable with movements like MeToo so long as the men in question are absolute monsters we can easily separate from the pack. It was excruciating — both the writing and the confusion of authorial identity. To insist that this is is just how men are, and how sex is. It's a rich question, and there are plenty of possible answers. To steal from David Foster Wallace, this is the water we swim in. At first, I had no idea what was going on. But as I realised at the time this was part of the anguish , I would never succeed.
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