What Is A Butch? Part 4: Butches Aren’t “Doms”

November 17, 2009 at 8:27 PM (Uncategorized) ()

This is another topic to file under “Avoiding Patriarchal Language.” Language constructs reality, and imprecise, incorrect, and negative language helps to construct nightmares.

No healthy, consensual relationship involves domination. Domination/submission is the language for master/slave (and other abusive) relationships; it is not, in general, proper language for the characterization of relationships that butches and their partners are in.

It seems to me that what people often mean when they characterize butches as “dominant” is closer to something like “taking the lead” or “initiating.” It is obvious that these relatively neutral ways of behaving have nothing to do with the harmful behavior of dominating.

Advertisements

4 Comments

  1. C said,

    Define domination? Are we talking about coercive power within all elements on a relationship, or are we talking about consensual role play/BDSM or being “tops” sexually?

    • lesbianplusfeminist said,

      Assuming that by “top” you mean someone who takes the lead/initiates sex/dates/etc., yes, that is the specific sense of the word that is addressed in this post. However, the main point was that butches should not be defined as “dominant” (at all, in any sense).

  2. Undercover Punk said,

    No healthy, consensual relationship involves domination. Domination/submission is the language for master/slave (and other abusive) relationships; it is not, in general, proper language for the characterization of relationships that butches and their partners are in.

    I agree. But BDSM, specifically, has so deeply infiltrated “queer” culture that domination is no longer viewed as unpleasant. It has been eroticised, along with violence–especially when it involves women. Only if feminist lesbians can RECLAIM the word butch will we be able to separate these two concepts.

  3. Bluetraveler said,

    Not exactly 100% on topic but I fail to see how BDSM can be the basis of a “healthy” relationship. If two people get off abusing each other, heh, their privilege, but indoctrinating an entire community into it and all of its wonderful kinks, like if it were a normal healthy things to do for people without sadistic desires or low self-esteem?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: