Wednesday, September 07, 2005

It's hard representing feminism

The AAF sexuality survey has finally come to terms with its deadline (press conference at Kubrick this Sunday) and initial press release has attracted the interest of a couple of newspapers. The Scampie sent a journalist to talk to me about the survey and also a photographer.

How do you take a photo which is relevant to the theme of women's sex lives? A challenging task no doubt, when the only subject who has agreed to be photographed was me, one of the researchers. So the photographer was struggling to find female students or couples as background to me, posing with arms folded in front of my chest looking assertive and sagely. Yeah, all this in the sweltering heat of Tuen Mun. Everytime he raises his camera and attached huge lens, crowds of students disperse.

To be honest, on paper, our survey certainly sounds very interesting and saucey even. But there really isn't that much to be made out of the findings. So women masturbate. Most have been sexually harrassed/assaulted without reporting to the police. Nearly all have seen their own genitalia. Most would not go for one night stands. The journalist, understandly, was trying hard to relate all this to sexual liberation, patriarchy, sexual politics, and all else. He wanted me to agree with him. But I couldn't! Our party line was that Hong Kong women still have a very romanticised notion of sex - good sex is with someone you love; good sex is found in a monogamous relationship; orgasms are not the most important thing about sex. While at the same time, within this secure, monogamous heterosexual relationship, they are not shy to take initiative, tell their partners what they want, and let them know when orgasm does not occur.

Hardly groundbreaking stuff, particularly if one decides to not focus on the voyeuristic details. So the story returns to one about HK being somewhere between the east and the west, progressive yet traditional, etc. Let's hope the journalist is happy with this and will write his feature accordingly.

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