Any Other Naked Woman

Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s lawyer, Henri Leclerc:

At these parties, people were not necessarily dressed, and I defy you to tell the difference between a naked prostitute and any other naked woman.

Gayle Rubin, in her famous essay “The Traffic in Women”

Marx once asked: “What is a Negro slave? A man of the black race. The one explanation is as good as the other. A Negro is a Negro. He only becomes a slave in certain relations. A cotton spinning jenny is a machine for spinning cotton. It becomes capital only in certain relations. Torn from these relationships it is no more capital than gold in itself is money or sugar is the price of sugar.” One might paraphrase: What is a domesticated woman? A female of the species. The one explanation is as good as the other. A woman is a woman. She only becomes a domestic, a wife, a chattel, a playboy bunny, a prostitute, or a human dictaphone in certain relations.

[h/t to Aaron Bady]

One thought on “Any Other Naked Woman

  1. The Gayle Rubin quote is interesting for being reminiscent of this: [link1]
    And: [link2]

    Especially after the events involving Dominique Strauss-Kahn last summer, and the role race played in constructing femininity/beauty/desirability/innocent victimhood/credibility/intelligible suffering/(hyper)sexuality–all female bodies (and all women) are NOT regarded equally, especially in relation to nudity. The category woman is always relational, and always already racialized After all: [link3] [link4]

    [Comment edited to clean up URLs – / Kerim]

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