Saturday, January 26, 2019

Levine's HARMFUL TO MINORS: THE PERILS OF PROTECTING CHILDREN FROM SEX



Here's the summary of Judith Levine's Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex from the book's publisher, the University of Minnesota Press:

A radical, refreshing, and long overdue reassessment of how we think and act about children’s and teens’s sexuality 

Sex is a wonderful, crucial part of growing up, and children and teens can enjoy the pleasures of the body and be safe, too. In this important and controversial book, Judith Levine makes this argument and goes further, asserting that America’s attempts to protect children from sex are worse than ineffectual. It is the assumption of danger and the exclusive focus on protection — what Levine terms "the sexual politics of fear" — that are themselves harmful to minors.

The book's wikipedia page relates:

Because of its controversial nature and content, it was nearly impossible for Levine to find a publisher — one prospective publisher even called it "radioactive." University of Minnesota Press eventually agreed to publish the book, despite cries of outrage from the right wing of Minnesota's political establishment.

Levine related that: "America's fears about child sexuality are both peculiarly contemporary [...]" (xx) "Indeed, the concept that sex poses an almost existential peril to children, that it robs them of their very childhood, was only born about 150 years ago." (xxvii)

And like we related in The Allure of NymphetsLevine wrote that this fear was instigated in the US by feminists who "exposed widespread rape and domestic sexual violence against [...] children and initiated a new body of law [(i.e., age-of-consent)] that would punish the perpetrator and cease to blame the victim. (xxviii)

But American feminists soon learned that teens were often the perpetrators and seducers of men who couldn't resist the allure of nymphets. For example, Levine found that in:

1984: Just under 50% of unmarried fifteen to nineteen-year-old nymphets had [consensual] sex
1990: 55% of unmarried fifteen to nineteen-year-old nymphets had [consensual] sex
2002: 50% of unmarried fifteen to nineteen-year-old nymphets had [consensual] sex

However, "[...] in Western Europe whether and when aren't the burning questions either. Sex education in those countries begins with the assumption that young people will carry on a number of sexual relationships during their teen years and initiate sex play short of intercourse long before that (which they do) and that sexual expression is a healthy and happy part of growing up. (xxii)

Lastly, Levine wrote in the introduction that: "Child or teen sex can be moral [i.e., post-marital] or immoral [i.e., pre-marital and sexual abuse] [...] sex is not ipso facto harmful to minors; and America's drive to protect kids from sex is protecting them from nothing. Instead it is harming them [...] sex, meaning touching and talking and fantasizing for bodily pleasure, is a valuable and crucial part of growing up, from earliest childhood on." (xxxiv)



Interestingly, Harmful to Minors won the 2002 Los Angeles Times Book Award for Current Interest.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Nymphet Marriage in the United States


Chris Baynes related in an Independent post that:

More than 200,000 children were married in the US over the past 15 years, new figures have revealed. Three 10-year-old girls [...] were among the youngest to wed [...]

The minimum age for marriage across most of the US is 18, but every state has exemptions – such as parental consent or pregnancy – which allow younger children to tie the knot.

Eight-seven per cent of the minors who married across the country between 2000 and 2015 were girls, with the majority either 16 or 17. 

The youngest wedded were three 10-year-old girls in Tennessee who married men aged 24, 25 and 31 in 2001.

Children as young as 12 were granted marriage licences in Alaska, Louisiana and South Carolina, while 11 other states allowed 13-year-olds to wed.

More than 1,000 children aged 14 or under were granted marriage licences.

A 14-year-old girl married a 74-year-old man in Alabama, while a 17-year-old wed a 65-year-old groom in Idaho.

Here's some additional data from Frontline:


However, while pre-teen and teen pre-marital sex may be on the rise, marriage appears to be on the decline.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Greuze's THE BROKEN VESSEL: A Nymphet's Lost Virginity


Jean-Baptiste Greuze's La cruche cassée [The Broken Vessel] (1771) is on display in the prestigious Louvre Museum. Here's part of the description of the painting that's posted on the Louvre's website:

Cette jeune fille au regard triste, dont la tenue en désordre laisse entrevoir un sein, est une allégorie de la virginité perdue, symbolisée par la cruche cassée pendue à son bras. 

[This sad looking young girl, whose disordered outfit gives a glimpse of a breast, is an allegory of lost virginity, symbolized by the broken jug hanging from her arm.]

Exposed Pink Nipple
Bradley Smith reiterated the Louvre's description of the nymphet in Erotic Art of the Masters: The 18th Century:

Before 1800 the subtle but moralistic paintings of Jean Baptiste Greuze were much admired. Here a childlike girl exposes a pink nipple, holds flowers against her pubic region and carries a pitcher. (The crack in it indicates that she has lost her virginity.) The contemporary viewer understood. 

Flowers Against Pubic Region & Broken Vessel