Tag Archives: sex

$ex Machine

by Lyla June Johnston, ’12

I wrote this poem on an airplane a few years ago. It’s been sitting in my notebook for a long time. I took it out the other day and decided I wanted to make a hip-hop track of it. I wanted to reclaim hip-hop as the healing force it was born to be by making it flashy, sexy and truthful. It’s main message is that we are not the sex slaves that pop music tells us we are, we are human beings that deserve love and respect.

How it developed was pretty interesting. I found the beat to go beneath it from the creative commons search on soundcloud.com. It was produced by a man in Sweden whom I’ve never met who goes by the name of “Dr. Mess.” I asked him if I could overlay some lyrics on it and he was fine with it. This is the beauty of making art for the people, not for the profit, under creative commons license as Dr. Mess does. The greed and fear that comes with copyrighting is relinquished and so we can collaborate more freely, even from across the ocean. Continue reading

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Shattering Taboos: Let’s Talk about Sexual Assault

By Joanna Poppyfield, student

Trigger Warning: Contains details of sexual assault

I am a firm believer in the power of open, honest dialogue as a prerequisite to healing. Not just personal healing, but collective healing. At Stanford, we need to improve dialogue around sexual assault and rape if we want to truly beginning to address the fact that we have a real problem with sexual assault and rape on our campus and to heal the wounds that afflict far too many of us.

Just a few facts to put this all in perspective (all obtained from the Stanford Daily):

  • 4% of Stanford students reported having been raped, while 7% reported in a Health Promotion Services survey that they had been penetrated against their will
  • 15% of people reported having sex under pressure, according to the same survey
  • 9% of the general student body, 13% of straight women, 28% of gay/bi/lesbian identified students, 11% of gay men and 15% of students who did not select a gender option have experienced attempted, non-consensual penetration, again according to the HPS survey.
  • Furthermore, over 50% of students surveyed reported being forcibly fondling, unwantedly touched or kissed, again according to the survey through HPS.
  • According to Angela Exson, Assistant Dean of the Office of Sexual Assault and Relationship Abuse, “the average offender will commit [sexual] crimes seven times before any action is taken against them.”
  • The worst statistic though, in my opinion, is that 28% of victims had no one to talk to about their experiences. Continue reading
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Gurl, I’m Queer as Fuck; or, Why Autostraddle Sucks

by Joanna Poppyfield, undergraduate student

Recently, I penned a post on STATIC entitled “Sex and Cis-tems of Oppression (NSFW) in which I opened up about my sex life, sexuality and gender identity to analyze veiled transphobia that affects the choices many people with regards to their sexual and romantic attractions. I got a lot of positive feedback, which surprised me somewhat, but I was thrilled to receive it.

Screen Shot 2013-02-07 at 10.47.33 AMA wonderful, amazing web editor of STATIC asked if she could contact other blogs on behalf of me to see if they would publish my piece. I agreed — I want this conversation, and other conversations about how ableism, racism, classism and other –isms can negatively influence how we experience sexual and romantic attraction, to occur in as many spaces as possible.

So she emailed a bunch of different blogs, some we never heard back from, others wanting to publish. And a few days ago, she got the following email from one of the editors at Autostraddle that made me want to vomit. Continue reading

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White Fetish

by Janani Balasubramanian, ’12

whitefetish

A failing of the word ‘activism’ is its designation of certain activities as political engagement and the rest of our lives as some other floaty and apolitical space.  In reality, we are always enacting and interacting with the structures of power and social positions each of us inhabit.  My friend Alok and I were at a queer conference this weekend in Atlanta to facilitate the same workshop that we’re presenting tonight: ‘Because You’re Brown Honey Gurl!: A Dialogue about Race and Desire’.  Our intention was to bring to bear a conversation on spaces where desire, sex, and romance circulate as political spaces.  The project of queer liberation isn’t limited to our policy engagements or our organizing work — it is also about considering how we desire and are desired in white supremacist realities.

We use the term ‘sexual racism’ to describe the ways that racism and racist traumas inflect our romantic and sexual relations. Continue reading

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Sex and Cis-tems of Oppression

by Joanna Poppyfield, student

Note: This post contains images that are NSFW.

bodySince I began my transition from living as a male to living as a female between my sophomore and junior year of college, my mother often expresses her pity for me at my “disability,” as she calls it. She refers to my penis.

When I began my medical transition — that is to say I started taking hormones — it was assumed that I would have surgery to “fix my problem.” Sure, there was always the option to not have the surgery, but it was often presented as less valid. I felt like there was no other option but to have surgery, or else I’d never be a “true girl.”

I’ve been living the past four years as a trans*woman — someone who is assigned a male sex and gender at birth, but instead identifies as a female — but I’ve felt feminine ever since I comprehended what feminine meant. I attached the words feminine and girl later on in my life. Continue reading

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The Sexual Health Peer Resource Center: A “Good First Stop” For Stanford Students

by Lina Schmidt, ’15

Screen Shot 2013-01-06 at 9.06.18 PMThe Sexual Health Peer Resource Center (SHPRC) is located on the second floor of Vaden Health Center. A great resource for students regardless of their sexual activity, the SHPRC offers a wide variety of services for little or no cost. The counselors at the SHPRC want all students to be aware of changes in the center’s budget: recent changes in funding allow students to access many products for reduced prices. Additionally, each student may access $3 credit at the SHPRC!

The Sexual Health Peer Resource Center is important to campus life for its promotion of safe, responsible sex and its inclusive attitude toward sexual identity. While many people are aware that they have access to condoms, students should also know that they may access many other products related to sexual health, including female condoms, personal lubricant, and pregnancy tests. Additionally, counselors at the SHPRC have been trained in both sexual health and peer counseling: they are available to speak with students in person, over the phone, or via livechat on the SHPRC website, which can be done anonymously.

It cannot be stressed enough that a college campus must have a supportive, inclusive dialogue around sexuality. Continue reading

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Scientists Want You to Be Happy

by Sibel Sayiner, ’15

Let’s face it. The world can really bring you down sometimes. You think that it’s a beautiful day, and everything is going according to plan: you’ve read all your emails, the Republican National Convention is going to be thrashed by good old Isaac, and the attractive person in the coffee shop smiled at you, very pointedly. Then you, foolish you, open up the world news. And read about the Arctic ice level, the UN report on Gaza, and the evil corporation that is killing your favorite phone/tablet/everything (unless you’re an Apple fan, then you’ll be pleased with the “rectangle with rounded corners” patent). You sigh, and even your fantastic new book can’t raise your glum frown.

I feel you. It’s rough out there. We spend so much time on what we need to do, what we think we need to do, and what we think we want to do. Then there’s sleeping (occasionally), and every so often, the casual conversation with an old (or new!) friend. While some people have the energy to do all these things all the time, I am definitely not one of them. I need my funky jazz music, video games and long walks in the evening in order to recharge.

However, these are not always possible, especially when one has time constraints as well as multiple commitments. This is where scientists come in. They do all the research, and then we mooch. Continue reading

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Let’s Talk About Consent

This piece originally posted on Femtastic.

by Mona Thompson, ’13

In the past few weeks, Stanford has been talking a lot about sexual assault in the context of Judicial Affairs and the Alternative Review Process (someone really cool and smart and talented even wrote an op-ed about it).

It seems like most of the opposition to specific points in the ARP comes from this justification of needing adequate protections for a man who is falsely accused of sexual assault and at risk of losing his precious Stanford education based on the false claims of some crazy or misinformed woman.  I’m not going to get into why we think women are falsely accusing men of sexual assault on campus (it seems like it would be a lot easier to get someone in trouble by falsely accusing them of almost anything else.  Like cheating).  But what I do want to talk about is: why are we so worried that men who do not think they assaulted someone will be accused of assault?

It seems that most of our worry over sexual assault comes from our own insecurities about consent. Continue reading

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Everything I Know About Activism I Learned From Having Sex

by anonymous


It’s Valentine’s Day—or Singles’ Awareness Day, depending on your perspective. But regardless of your relationship status, you’ll spend today bombarded by thoughts of love, and perhaps those thoughts will lead to more thoughts about…Sex.

So I thought I’d take advantage of this happy day by discussing the principles of organizing and orgasming. In order to do both better, you need to embody the following qualities:

  • Communication: Communication is key. Sex without a mutual understanding of what’s okay and what’s not is always bad news. As a leader, always check in with your group’s members to make sure that your plans and actions are kosher. Don’t move forward with anything until you’ve received proper consent. And regularly ask for feedback—How am I doing? What do you like/not like about this campaign?
  • Empathy: Connecting with your partner(s) physically and emotionally leads to great sex. Similarly, it’s important to really get to know the communities with whom your organizing. What are their needs? What makes them happy? Make sure that you’re connecting the other members of your organization as well. Continue reading
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