Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Thin Blurry Line

Cara over at The Curvature has a post up. The subject of the post touches one of the biggest issues in science: robots and human relations.

The post in question is about an image of a what appears to be a woman with a game controller extending from her waist. Was the image in question meant to depict a woman that has had her humanity and free will stripped and reduced to a object of pleasure or an object of pleasure that, while looking like a woman, is not meant to be connected to a real woman in anyway whatsoever?

Now I personally think of that pic as an object that should not be construed with a real woman but I can fully understand how someone would conclude the image does indeed depict a woman that has been reduced to a controllable thing that exists for the pleasure of her controller. So that has me thinking, where is line between fantasy and real and what is considered to be crossing it?

Perhaps the line is based on how much of the woman is depicted:

1. If that image is reducing a woman to a pleasure object then who is to say that a fleshlight is objectifying due to the fact that all the "unnecessary" parts a woman's body are removed and the user is only left with the "important" part.

2. Perhaps if you take that fleshlight and add a basic rubber body around it. Now its been upgraded from a portable vagina to blowup doll. Now that its in the crude shape of a woman does this mean that it has now become offensive to women?

3. Now take away that crude rubber skin and add a lifelike cyberskin. The device is in the shape of a woman and has "skin". Is it Objectifying yet?

4. Okay this time we'll add facial features, breasts, hair, fingernails, movable joints, a voicebox, etc. The result would be something that Geppetto would be jealous of.

At what point do you say that the line has been crossed and you no longer just have a sex toy for your sexual pleasure but have decided that all the parts of a woman's body are not needed and its best to just discard the the useless ones?

I have to say that the mentality of the owner of the object can offer quite a bit of insight into that. How does the owner treat the women in their life? Do they tend to stay away from real women? What types of fantasies does the owner have about women?