Fifty Shades of…Love? BDSM?

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L James has been one of the most talked about books of all time and the debut of the movie premiered on Valentine’s Day, raking in as much $100 million in the domestic box office and $300 million worldwide.

Since I’ve turned 17, I felt a bit more curious about this book and decided to explore this sensual and erotic trilogy. First of all, there has been a lot of negative reviews on this book AND movie (some people probably have not read the book, especially men), claiming that this book glorifies an “abusive” relationship through the weak character of Anastasia Steele and the dominatrix, Christian Grey. To be honest, I have not read much of the negative reviews because I want to talk about the book (ONLY) without having other opinions diluting my OWN opinion.

My first thought was: THIS IS FICTION. The book is not supposed to be taken seriously, because, guess what? It’s a fantasy. I recently saw a post on Tumblr pointing out how books are influential, for example: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee or Mein Kampf by Hitler. I absolutely agree. But if you read those books carefully, they both have a bigger theme, racism and social injustice for Lee and a reform movement for Hitler. Personally, I just finished Fifty Shades of Grey (onto Fifty Shades Darker) and yes, sex is a big part of the book. Grey has a devastatingly sad past that causes him to be that way-to want to be in control of his life for once (in this case, during sex) or his interest in “BDSM”. BDSM stands for bondage, discipline, sado-masochism (submissive and dominant). Being a dominant, Grey seeks pleasure in giving pain, BUT he has a long list of what Anastasia should expect, and for any reason if she wants to back out, she has full power. Throughout the book, he CONSTANTLY asks her if she is okay with the relationship and for her consent if he wants to try something “new” in the bedroom. And again, Steele is an adult and can make her own decisions.

Moreover, the sex was obvious and in-your-face but all of that is really overshadows by the emerging facts about Grey’s dark past and Anastasia’s yearn for him, emotionally and physically. I mean, yes, (SPOILER-ish?) she did cried once when he spanked her but at ANY moment, she could have stopped everything..BUT that’s besides the point.

This is a woman’s fantasy…at least to most women…because the book has sold 100 million copies. This was written BY a woman FOR women. If you don’t get it..I’ll put it this way. Remember how you always want that fairytale wedding-extravagant with many fancy ballgown wedding dresses and crystallized chandelier? Well, sorry to tell you but if your salary isn’t on par then it won’t happen. CAN’T A GIRL KEEP HER FANTASY STILL? And if women are so into this book, what does it say? NOTHING. It’s still just her fantasy. I am not offended by anything written in this book-maybe because I am young I don’t know. We have bigger things to worry about, like the U.S debt than a sensual book. It is not sending out any messages NOR giving ANYBODY any incentive to do abusive things. There is PLENTY of horror movies and t.v shows with many violent scenes-why isn’t anybody protesting THAT? Anastasia and Christian’s relationship is their relationship. If YOUR relationship is failing, maybe you should assess that instead.

Actress Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan heatin up the screen. Photo @2015 by SynergybyDesign  (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Actress Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan heatin up the screen.
Photo @2015 by SynergybyDesign (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

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