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These are the core obsessions that drive our newsroom—defining topics of seismic importance to the global economy. Our s are made to shine in your inbox, with something fresh every morning, afternoon, and weekend. Many obituaries in the mainstream media have described him as a sexual liberator.
Feminists and conservativeshowever, have employed far harsher terms, noting that he drugged, demeaned and essentially imprisoned women in his Playboy Mansion in order to live out the fantasy he marketed. She died in Each made sexuality into big business. Beate became a pilot—an unusual profession for women even today —and during World War Two she flew for the Luftwaffe. Within two decades, her firm, the eponymous Beate Uhse, would become the largest erotica enterprise in Germany.
In the s and s, Uhse battled restrictive legislation, powerful churches and conservative social mores.
So did Hugh Hefner. Hefner presented himself as the embodiment of the lifestyle he promoted: a bathrobe-clad swinger surrounded by Playboy bunnies. The need was even more intense after World War Two. Due to wartime separation, millions of Germans had lost or never established good patterns of communication with their partners.
A great many had experienced militarized sexual violenceeither as perpetrators, victims or eyewitnesses. Unplanned pregnancy could be disastrous in the landscape of hunger and homelessness that followed the war. Beate Uhse promised to remedy this sexual misery. Using exquisitely delicate language, her catalogs diagnosed a range of sexual problems and offered solutions through consumption.
She hinted that men who rushed lovemaking because their minds were cluttered by work would disappoint their wives. An erotic novel might get them into the mood. She wrote that without contraception, women would seek unsafe abortions—and would also be unable to climax due to fear of pregnancy.
Couples might consider a wide array of contraceptives. He might not even know that she, too, was capable of climax. He should read a sex manual, and perhaps try a device to increase the stimulation his wife experiences during intercourse. And if a man climaxed too quickly, he would frustrate his wife, whom nature had equipped to take more time to reach orgasm.
An ointment to prevent premature ejaculation would help. Of course not.
Many liked arousing images, accepted nonmarital sex, and sought pleasure for themselves and not just for their partners. But they felt guilty because it was so hard to interpret such pleasures as legitimate. In the early s, her firm pioneered brick-and-mortar erotica shops. But the birth control pill put a dent in condom sales, while improved sexual education in the schools and the popular media decreased the need for basic self-help books.
Beate Uhse was nothing if not an astute businesswoman, and she shifted course. By the s, Beate Uhse was best known as a peddler of porn.
They were particularly irked by the fact that Beate Uhse, as a woman, stood openly behind her business: other erotica entrepreneurs at least had enough shame to maintain a low profile. At 69 she sells women. For 90 million a year. Beate Uhse was not among them. It also reflected an awareness that there was an easily available alternative in the form of condoms—and the belief that one might reasonably expect men to use them. When, inmale student radicals put images of nude women on the covers of their magazines in order to increase circulation, their female counterparts were quick to object.
Rather than having to create a feminist critique from scratch, they had expectations regarding mutual respect that were now being violated. Both Hugh Hefner and Beate Uhse were enormously influential. Beate Uhse waged the same battles, but shaped a sexual consumer culture grounded in female pleasure and mutual harmony. And then she turned to mainstream porn. If we want to ponder the true ambivalence of sexual consumer culture, Beate Uhse is the place to look. This article was originally published on The Conversation.
Read the original article. These are some of our most ambitious editorial projects. Published October 5, Last updated on August 27, This article is more than 2 years old. me up. Update your browser for the best experience.Women want sex Empire
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