By Charlotte Horton
Courtesy of gothamist.com
As uncomfortable as it may sound, moms are getting quite giddy at something that may make you sqiurm. But as I found my own mother becoming obsessed over Twilight, there sprung 50 Shades of Grey, written by E.L. James, and it completely redefined the genre.
As Twilight undertakes Bella’s conscience, 50 Shades of Grey has on a similar written voice with its main character, Anastasia. The story, although more risqué, shows in-depth descriptions of Anastasia’s sexual encounters as well as her inner monologues. The New York Times bestseller also brings up the subject of bondage and the fascination of it all found in women aged between 20 and 30. The story gives a much more tame image of sadism, as Anastasia’s lover, Christian Grey, spanks her while being tentative through every step of her pleasure being. Moms in particular are going crazy for the genre, and inevitably put 50 Shades of Grey onto the New York Times bestseller list before it even came out.
In a present world where women have an increased power in their homes, as well as the working world, they have become infatuated with the sexual power in 50 Shades of Grey and similar stories of the genre. And it’s not simply because women enjoy having their power taken away. It’s because it helps make the reality of equality more fun and exhilarating. It takes a mommy away from work and changing diapers, as she indulges on the carefully crafted emersion of love and lust. But how do these genres manipulate these women — college women, for that matter — on the facts and their expectations of sex?
The topic of ‘sex’ isn’t as hush hush as it used to be anymore. Although it is still censored (visually) in some media, it is still an open subject for discussion. Women are allowing themselves to indulge in these stories like Anastasia’s, and as a result, in their own sexual lives whether with their significant other or by themselves. Women are feeling boxed-in by societal expectations — to raise a family, have a career, find sexual liberation. Moments to give all that responsibility and power away is scarce, older women have decided to lose their power while reading this passionate novel. It ignites their imaginations and makes their day-to-day life not as boring, even for just one hot, steamy moment.
But without offending our mommy generation, we have to agree that these stories inspire their fans as well. Sex and our fantasies of it can be a fun thing to figure out and explore. Not just to pleasure our own thought process, but to ignite our personal sexual lives as well–whether it lay somewhat flat or simply needed a boost.
Watch out though, as the genre may be somewhat disappointing when the reality of sex doesn’t match the expectations of it after reading these novels. You might end up with great sex yet to someone who doesn’t care about your happiness, a common situation on college campuses. Or the latter with something that seems to be love, but puts out really crappy and boring sex. The hype of it makes reality suck!
But even with all that in mind, it’s clear that the media and society has become more comfortable with sexuality. 50 Shades of Grey with it’s mix of lust and love and mild sadism, competed against the Hunger Games in generating overall hype, while reaching the New York Times bestseller list before being released. It will be interesting to see how far the series goes, and how far the genre will grow and continue to be as popular as it is today.
Have you read 50 Shades of Grey? What are your thoughts on the series?