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Slaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaves (!)

December 19, 2008

Slavery is a huge fetish. In multiple sexual subcultures. Everyone loves slaves (except, possibly, the people who have actually been slaves, or are actually descended from slaves). Before I go any farther, I would just like to establish a few things.

Slavery:

  1. Immoral. Totally. Absolutely. To deny another human being of their fundamental right to freedom.
  2. Kind of stupid. In most slave-cultures (typically the civilized ones), slaves vastly outnumber slave-owners. What the fuck are you gonna do if they, say, revolt?
  3. Economic suicide. That shit is expensive. There’s a reason capitalism relies on wage-slaves.
  4. Hot as hell.

Slavery is, honestly, one of the oldest aspects of my kink (as opposed to fucking men up the ass, which is relatively recent). There is a reason for this.

I grew up in a slave-culture.

There’s been an odd rumor floating about that the slaves were all freed and we don’t have them anymore, but this is really just a lie that the slave-holding class tells the slave class to make them shut up and accept their lot as still having all the shitty jobs.

I am racially and ancestrally part of the slave-holding class. My coloring will get me unwarranted privilege in many parts of the world (the rich, oppressing parts), but once you leave those places it’s like wearing a brand. Both sides of my family had slaves up to their eyeballs. Going to public school, we were all taught the lie that slavery was over and done with, and now everyone was equal, everyone could hold hands, and everything was happy. They also taught us, not in so many words, but between the lines, in innuendo, in the guilt-tripping name of Political Correctness, that we were evil, because our ancestors had owned the other kids’ ancestors.

My schooling taught me that slavery was Wrong, and the culture of the region taught me to fetishize it.

Of course, since slavery was Wrong, I had to find a way to justify it.

Ancient Egypt, Greece, Israel, the rest of Arabia. They all had slaves. So if I couched it in the terms of their culture, I’m just being accurate. Right? Those are also not the slave-cultures I grew up in, and my ancestors didn’t own anybody else’s ancestors there, so I can’t be held culpable.

I started writing my first book when I was eight. It was about these humanoid aliens who had skin that changed changed color according to their moods and they were waaaaaay smarter than humans, and they were really the ancient Egyptians. But in the book it was modern day times and they had come back to earth after a hiatus or something and started kidnapping people. The scenario was that these people were desperately looking for jobs, and they saw an ad in the newspaper (put there by the psychadelic aliens), and went to this big imposing building and rang the doorbell dubiously, and fell through a trap door. I kid you not. Then there were also sorts of transport issues like cages and padded boxes and oxygen tanks, and then they get informed that they’re slaves to bunch of color-changing psychadelic aliens, and they freak out, but it’s just tough luck. So they have to crawl around naked because they’re not allowed to walk upright because compared to the aliens they were just animals, and they were forced to breed and shit. But my aliens were the good aliens, who treated their slaves right, so it was okay.

I wrote it all down in a one-subject spiral notebook, and all the adults would ask, “Oh, what are you doing?”

“I am writing on my book,” I told them.

“Oh, isn’t that great!” they remarked to each other. “She’s so creative.”

I knew they were patronizing me, but I also knew they could not understand my genius.

They also never actually asked to read what I had written, which I knew was a good thing, because I already knew I couldn’t tell them about all the slaves. They wouldn’t understand. I already knew all about selective self-censorship (from experiences explaining to friends of the family about how we could put naked men between giant slabs of peanut-buttered bread, and they would be eaten by giants, when I was six). So I would tell everyone it was about Egyptian aliens, but not about the Egyptian aliens’ naked human slaves. If anyone did read it and was shocked, I had my defense prepared.

“It’s HISTORICAL.”

The slaves stayed with me. And sometimes I felt guilty as hell about it, because (like hurting men), enslaving people was badwrongsick. Unless I thought about it in a historical or cultural context, in which case it was okay. But I couldn’t always fool myself. After my fascination with slavery was well-established, and the internet came about for all us plebes, I ran into a couple of fetish sites about female slavery. And I stared. Wanting, and yet knowing it was Wrong. After staring for a long time and angrily clicking on the blurry thumbnails of the men slaves until it became tearfully, frustratingly clear that they would not lead me to bigger, crystal-clear photographs of men in chains, I dutifully told the nearest adult that I had found a Bad website to deflect suspicion from my terrible desires.

It’s the power. The non-consensuality. The brands, the tattoos, the piercings, the chains and the rope, the marks of servitude, which mean no escape, even if they get away. It’s the whipping. It’s the caravans, and the long marches, and the markets. It’s the bartering and the handing over the cash like you’re buying a lamp, the being able to do anything you damn well please because if they fight back, you can just have them lashed bloodless, or fucking executed. It’s having the law on the side of your depravity and not on theirs. It’s the inequality, the unfairness, being built into everyday, pedantic life, and no one questions it. It’s the desperate helplessness and futility, and the pathetic gratitude if their lot turns out to not be completely miserable. It’s being loot, being spoils, a trinket, or just another disposable, replaceable body after generations of the institution. Slavery is not one book in my collection of kink, it has it’s own damn library. The sheer variety.

I just realized something else about the slavery fetish, is that it normalized my rape fantasies. Because, you know, if they’re slaves, you can do whatever you want to them. The law will back you up. And as everyone knows, the law determines morality. Oh, and another thing, with me being bipolyomnipan. I’ve never really fantasized about hurting women, but I’ve definitely fantasized about enslaving them. But usually when I was younger. Possibly before I crushed any hint of my sexuality.

Imagine how I felt when I found out there were people who wanted to be slaves.

A result of my upbringing in the slave-culture is that when I think of a person of the particular racial background of the slaves of my ancestors as a slave, my brain kind of stalls. I’m like, ‘Wait, uhhh… Is this okay?’ Even thinking about it in a purely BDSM context, it kind of jars me out of the headspace. Then I think about race-play. And I think I could do it. But it would take me a few tries.

“Get back to work, boy, or I’ll– Wait, am I doing this right? Are you sure this is okay? I’m pretty sure this exact scene occurred a hundred-fifty years ago. Oh my God, I sound like my grandmother.”

The scary thing is, once I got over that, I think I’d be pretty good at it. Because I have the culture embedded in my subconscious. But I don’t have that kind of hangup about thinking about people from other racial backgrounds as slaves. It’s weird.

Since I started exploring kink, I’ve had a lot of fantasies about having a real-life slave in the BDSM context, complete with collar, contract and everything (and cage. Or box). But there are a lot of different ways to couch slavery. Millions of scenarios, cultural contexts, socio-political-economic contexts, eras, body jewelry.

But here’s my fantasy. You know those slaves who are secretly really learned and smart, but they have to act completely stupid around the masters who would totally freak out or punish them for having a brain, but they’re secretly running everything? I want to be the person who recognizes that gleam of razor-sharp intelligence in the eyes of a man marked for labor in some dark, terrible mine, and by acting completely nonchalant and using my incredible powers of bartering I get him for fucking cheap. ‘Cuz I’m that good a judge of slave-flesh and character. And then I have this amazingly smart, useful person to help run everything, because I’m not a snob and I recognize talent no matter where it is. But he’s still my slave. Mine.

And I can do whatever I want with/to him.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2008 4:00 am

    Quite naturally, and I’m sure you already know this, but you would like a lot of Eileen’s writings about slavery because the way she and I click on this topic is eerily similar to the way you talk about it.

    Also:

    But here’s my fantasy. You know those slaves who are secretly really learned and smart, but they have to act completely stupid around the masters who would totally freak out or punish them for having a brain, but they’re secretly running everything? I want to be the person who recognizes that gleam of razor-sharp intelligence in the eyes of a man marked for labor in some dark, terrible mine, and by acting completely nonchalant and using my incredible powers of bartering I get him for fucking cheap. ‘Cuz I’m that good a judge of slave-flesh and character. And then I have this amazingly smart, useful person to help run everything, because I’m not a snob and I recognize talent no matter where it is. But he’s still my slave. Mine.

    And I can do whatever I want with/to him.

    That sounds like an awesome premise for a HTPorn story. I’ve been wanting another reason to write new porn. Want to collaborate with me on this and write one together on the wiki itself…? It would at least be an interesting and very fun experiment, if nothing else. ;)

  2. ranat permalink
    December 19, 2008 4:26 am

    Sounds like a good holiday project. :P I have also made progress on the second part of Triad.

    You know how in Peter Pan every time you say you don’t believe in fairies, a fairy dies? What if instead, every time a good piece of porn about submissive men was made, a mansub came into being, or at least came to his senses?

    I realized that’s kind of how I’ve been thinking about the HTPorn, without realizing it. Like I can somehow cosmologically control the ebb and flow of submissive men by writing half-decent porn. Talk about subconscious delusions of grandeur. Oh well. I suppose it’s less harmful than some other delusions.

  3. December 19, 2008 1:50 pm

    It doesn’t sound delusional to me, Ranat. What better way have we of bettering the world if not changing it directly? HTPorn, MaleSubmissionArt.com, KinkForAll: all of these are just the latest in a string of things I’ve tried to do with no less lofty goals than to make the world I live in better. Perhaps these aren’t the most conventional methods, but then I’m not the most conventional guy, either. ;)

    I’ll start daydreaming some hawtsexy for this porn story based on the premise you described and will let you know if I create a group of pages on the HTPorn wiki. If you beat me to it, just ping me on the mailing list to let me know where you’ve started to write and I’ll just join your efforts.

  4. ranat permalink
    December 19, 2008 2:33 pm

    Cool. I shall also dream up something hawtsexy, as you put it.

    Hmm… Slaaaaves…

  5. Ireen permalink
    December 20, 2008 6:42 pm

    I really wanted to say something clever on this, but then I was in awe at your historical elaboration on the Egyptian aliens and then the whole bit about men in cages and whipping and brands and piercings and… I think my brain’s melted. Can I just join in the choir of “slaaaaaveees”?

  6. December 21, 2008 11:04 am

    Ranat, I put up a new HTPorn vignette tonight very much inspired by the back-and-forth we’re having over this blog post. I’m not sure it’s really fleshed out enough to be the beginning (or any part of) this potentially collaborative hawtsexy story, but if you want to take it and run with it, or use it as part of a story, please do!

    In the mean time, I’ll keep adding bits and pieces of fantasy as I daydream about the premise you’ve described and we’ll see where that goes. :)

  7. ranat permalink
    December 21, 2008 3:21 pm

    @Ireen – Join ye in the chorus. Slaaaaaaaves. The world needs more hot slaves! Of the non-literal, willing kind.

    @maymay – I shall check out the HTPorn soon. I too have been daydreaming about the premise, on my 22 hour bus ride, but now I am too near coma to do anything about it. Soon, though. Soon.

  8. drew permalink
    February 11, 2011 3:23 am

    I am late to this party but I had to say that that last paragraph? Pretty much my fantasy, only from the other side. Usually in some absurd, elaborate sci-fi or fantasy setting.

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