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Satisficing, again, for the guys who don't like sex - Elf M. Sternberg
Satisficing, again, for the guys who don't like sex
Yes, I know. A major rule of the Internet is "Don't Read The Comments." But I was still entertained by one particular comment attached to an article in the Atlantic entitled

A Straight Male History of Sex Dolls.

I'm fond of the word "satisficing." It means, for the most part, "settling for a satisfactory substitute," but it has some important implications behind it, the first of which is (a) the user is actively searching for that satisfaction and entertaining the notion of accepting a substitute, and (b) the user, having chosen a substitute, was already aware of the field of available substitutes before the search began. Articles like the one in the Atlantic raise awareness about the substitution of "women-shaped objects" for real women. Author Julie Beck recognizes the real threat of satisficing, even as she makes the act of satisficing more likely, when she concludes:
As human women become more empowered, sex dolls offer a way for men to retreat into relationships where they are still in control. A doll is a woman-shaped thing that may bring a man comfort, may inspire devotion in him, and may drive away his loneliness. It will never challenge him, and it will certainly never do anything to make him feel ridiculous.
There's a hint of condescending implication in Beck's final word that the purchasers of such dolls are already ridiculous, but Beck is also worried about how alienating such toys are by reducing men's experience of real, human women.

The comment, an early one so you might have trouble finding it, says (and I'm paraphrasing here) "It's astounding that Julie Beck managed to write an entire article about sexual frustration without ever using the word 'frustration' once." This is the so-called "Men's Rights Activism" in one tight nutshell: it is the fault of women that men resort to these dolls, because women are evil withholders of the sex men are rightly and necessarily due. You can tell men are rightly and necessarily due that sex: they feel frustration when they're not getting it, and frustration is bad, and since the men didn't do anything to deserve that frustration, it must be imposed upon them by an evil outside force, and there's only one group that could be wielding that evil outside force, and that's the not men.

This all leads back to my basic thesis: A lot of men hate women more than they like sex, and I'm not convinced that most men even like sex all that much. They want alternatives that deliver the oxytocin high without all the messy human interaction. As technosexual alternatives become more and more convincing, we'll move into a realm where most men (by desire) and most women (by necessity in a pauce market) will get their satisfaction through satisficing proxies, and people who meet face to face won't be the lucky ones, they'll just be weird.

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Current Mood: amused amused

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(Deleted comment)
elfs From: elfs Date: August 9th, 2014 03:27 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: An old idea

The Machine Stops is one of my favorite stories. It's basically a "cast out of Eden" story for failing to appreciate knowledge, so it's a reverse Biblical story in its own way.
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