Good morning and welcome to Fika! When Cara Bristol asked me about discussing feminism and DD for Fika, immediately my mind jumped to the kind of post *I* would like to write! I may be writing a follow-up post in the next few days, but this is about Cara. The original title of her new book was The Feminist and the Dom, and so today she is here to talk more about the feminism angle. Please join me in welcoming Cara! Ask her, if you dare, why she didn’t bring anything more than graham crackers. 🙂
My name is Cara, and I’m a feminist who writes erotic stories about men disciplining women.
This isn’t Contrary Feminist Anonymous? Oops, excuse me. Wrong room. I smelled the coffee and saw Swedish pastries, and thought…oh, never mind.
Seriously, Ana asked me to talk about feminism and domestic discipline and how the two relate. To many people, they don’t. One cannot be a feminist and allow herself to be spanked. Or even be a feminist and enjoy reading spanking stories. Or can she?
First, let me share my feminist resume. In the past I have:
- Been member of the National Organization for Women
- Been long-term subscriber to Ms. Magazine
- Completed a half dozen college level women’s study classes
- Done public relations for my university’s feminist Women’s Center.
- Written a weekly newspaper column about women’s rights.
No one would have guessed what I do now: Write erotic romances about male heads of households spanking women.
And on the surface, my domestic discipline erotic romances don’t appear to support the notion of equality that modern women want and enjoy.
But here’s the thing: feminism seeks to award women the full range of rights and privileges so they can be the navigators of their lives. Just because women can now be doctors and school principals doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be nurses and teachers. Just because feminists fought for women to have equal employment opportunity doesn’t mean that they should have to forgo staying home to raise their children if that’s what they want and can afford it. Just because a woman is equal under the law, doesn’t mean that as a wife she shouldn’t make compromises in her marriage. To merely exchange one set of prohibitions and restrictions for another is not liberation.
So, if a woman feels loved and secure when her husband heads their household and metes out discipline, why shouldn’t she choose that lifestyle? Paradoxically, as women achieve more equality in the workforce and society, domestic discipline may become even more attractive to some because it relieves them of responsibility and eliminates ambiguity (and perhaps strife) in a relationship. As feminism failed to predict, and women subsequently learned, being a Superwoman who does it all is mentally and physically taxing.
Feminism demands that that men and women be treated equally. Historically erroneous assumptions of women’s capabilities have been made arbitrarily on the basis of gender, and opportunities and rights denied.
But however equal in worth and value, men and women are different, biologically, mentally, socially. We think differently, we act differently. In general (of course, there are always exceptions), men are aggressive and competitive. Women are more passive, more social, more relationship-oriented.
A domestic discipline relationship is set up with traditional gender roles: the man leads, the woman follows. Spanking represents only part of a complex dynamic resting on cornerstone of responsibility and trust. Because of inherent differences in men and women, it’s not unlikely a couple would gravitate toward what feels comfortable and natural to them.
Relationships seek their own stasis based on the personalities and needs of the individuals involved. Among platonic, same sex friendships often one person leads while the other follows. In same sex partnerships the same is true, and feminism has long supported lesbian rights under the notion that one does not need a man to be happy and fulfilled. (You’d be hard pressed to find a lesbian who isn’t a feminist!). Would feminism object to one woman serving as head of household and the other woman being the helpmate partner? Probably not.
But getting back to M/F couples, even those spouses with the most egalitarian marriages still follow some traditional gender roles. Look at couples driving down the highway. Who’s usually behind the wheel? The man. Which gender usually stays home with a sick child? The woman. Who is considered the primary wage earner? The husband. What does the bride get at her shower? Gifts for the home or sexy lingerie. What does the groom get at his bachelor party? Drunk. When a woman has a high-powdered, high-paying career she usually marries a spouse with the same. She does not seek out a trophy househusband.
We still make decisions according to traditional gender roles. DD is only at the far end of the spectrum.
Would domestic discipline work in my marriage? No way. It’s not how choose to live my life. But I wouldn’t force my choices on someone else, because that’s what feminism is about: choices.
And even though I’m a feminist, I like strong, macho aggressive men. And I damn sure like reading about them. As a fantasy, being swept off one’s feet by and surrendering to a strong, macho guy ranks pretty high on the list. Because a little tiny part inside wants to be cared for. Wants that Cinderella story.
Which is why I write about domestic discipline in an erotic, romantic way. In Body Politics, the third Rod and Cane Society novel to be released tomorrow, I paired a feminist with a dominant man who believes in domestic discipline. I wanted them to work it out, to show the thought processes and negotiation that might lead a diehard feminist to allow herself to be disciplined by a man.
I especially wanted to show the give-and-take that exists in relationships, including DD ones. What I hope readers take away from Body Politics is concern and caring with which the hero Mark treats the heroine Stephanie. Her well-being is foremost on his priority list.
Spanking is only a minor part of a domestic discipline relationship. What it’s really about responsibility and trust. How can feminism object to that?
Blurb for Body Politics:
Feminist Stephanie Gordon knows the instant she meets blind date Mark DeLuca it’s not going to work. Sure the deputy chief of police is criminally sexy, but he’s arrogant, domineering and sexist. Thank goodness after the evening ends, she’ll never have to see him again.
A member of the Rod and Cane Society, an organization of men who spank, Mark DeLuca is attracted to Stephanie like a paddle to a well-rounded ass. He sees beneath the shield of feminist militancy to the soft, sensitive woman she tries to hide. When she storms away in a snit, the chase is on. Can a spanko convince a diehard feminist her true strength lies in submission?
Body Politics is the third novel in the Rod and Cane Society series. All Rod and Cane books can be read as stand alones.
Buy it at Loose Id! (Will not be available at Amazon for a few weeks)