The Promiscuous Language


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How does sexual language function in a society that keeps sexuality a double standard? What does it mean to be a cunt, a slut, a whore, a bitch, or even simply labeled promiscuous – in a society that values women’s bodies but despises their open sexuality? How do girls come to terms with these words, with their own bodies when they approach the patriarchal mirror society sets up? The answer is simple: they don’t know how to. Girls grow up confused about how to approach their own sexuality, and thus, don’t even know how to explain their experiences without an inlaid avid fear and awareness of words. Either you are a prude or you’re promiscuous. You’re either pleasing your boyfriend or your father. There is an image to maintain in society, driven by labels and the power of words, that eventually either labels the girl as good or bad. Frigid or slutty. In our modern day society, we ask a girl to come to terms with her sexuality in a respectful way, all the while lambasting girls with images of other girls scantily clad. Society tells her all the men want her sexuality – revel in your power and embrace it, but remember, no man wants a slut. Be yourself, but cover up. Speak out, but don’t be difficult. Essentially, love yourself… but be aware of the limits. Limit your body, and correspondingly, limit your power, and then finally, limit the positive words that can be ascribed to a female’s sexuality. “Many women allow our lives and sexual expressions to be dictated by the threat of being perceived as ‘Whores.’ Because of thinking like this, our society is brimming with women who have a hard time understanding, for instance, that Whores can be and are sexually assaulted” (Muscio 92). The societal messages become so mixed that the unacceptable becomes acceptable, and language limits the sexual life of females to the extent that they become afraid of the emotional and physical consequences society thrusts upon them. How do you defend a girl who puts herself out there sexually? Is there even a set of positive words for the female’s sex life? What are the limits of language? It seems that all depends on how much you love yourself, how you have lived and logically process the word, what the experiences were that have thrust the word upon you, and furthermore – if you want to break barriers, become difficult, make change, speak out, and embrace yourself above all others.

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