Puritan Or Porn Star? At Harvard, The Choice Is Yours!

Oh boy! Get ready for another literary jewel sprung forth from the foreheads of Harvard’s undergrad gods (remember Scene magazine?). Diamond, profiled in today’s Crimson, bills itself as a “really sexy magazine” driven by the passionate creed of founder Matthew Di Pasquale, ’08: “I love women.”

You hear that? He loves us! Which is why he wants to photograph us nude, alongside “shirtless men,” in mainstream-Hollywood positions like these:

Don't worry, non-blondes: MAXIM also loves Eva Mendez.

According to the Crimson article, unlike H-Bomb, Harvard’s artistic sex-positive publication,

Diamond’s content will range from interviews with models that would allow readers “to get to know them” to “applicable” articles about exercise and style, Di Pasquale said. The magazine will also contain various self-improvement articles with the primary goal of helping men attract women.

Gosh, I can only imagine what those self-improvement tips might be. Cultivating active listening skills? Building robust emotional support networks? Becoming cognizant of male privilege in their daily lives? Objecting when buddies crack rape jokes? Advocating equal pay for equal work? Brushing up on Trans 101 basics? (Oh, that’s right, real men like Di Pasquale love women, not trans people — my bad.)

– – –

Like Ashley Pletz said over the FUP list, even before the first issue is released, you can smell the heterosexim and offensiveness a-cookin’ away. That’s what undermines the well-intentioned but misguided endorsements of folks like sex blogger Lena Chen and H-Bomber Michelle Crentsil, quoted in the Crimson as supporting more outlets for sexual expression at Harvard as a general rule. Chen, for instance, believes that “any increase in dialogue about sex on campus is certainly positive because Harvard is kind of Puritanical.” Anticipating genuine dialogue rather than a net spike in gossipmongering, titillation, and reinforcement of sexist, racist, and classist beauty standards? Pretty optimistic.

Fortunately, anti-sexist and truly sex-positive events also happen at Harvard, though they’re sometimes hard to find. (A useful trick: search the Crimson archives for Lucy Caldwell’s columns, and look for the organizations she excoriates as man-hating, values-poisoning, and/or generally filled with overweight women who crave men’s attention but blame them for regrettable sex, which they falsely classify as rape.) For those of you who want to think beyond the Puritan/Pornstar binary, make sure to check out FemSex, the terrifically sex-positive extracurricular course (slash amazing bonding and growing experience for folks of all genders) exploring various topics in female sexuality. The next info session is this Thursday at 7pm in the Women’s Center. So while another sketchy senior is busy loving his women (sorry, make that “woman”: so far only one model is on board), we can get on with actually appreciating, and learning from, each other.

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One response to “Puritan Or Porn Star? At Harvard, The Choice Is Yours!

  1. i missed this when you posted it, but i love it! trans 101 is clearly going to be in diamond. and thanks for the femsex plug.

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