Ovidie and Diglee, good feminist advice for teens – Liberation

In a pedagogical and militant guide, the writer-director and illustrator address injunctions made to girls about their bodies and their nascent sex life.

Ovidie is definitely on all fronts. The former porn actress, turned feminist writer and director, whistleblower of the abuse of the porn industry, analyst of the relationship with the body and sexuality, has signed with Diglee, an equally feminist illustrator, You do not (1). This 72-page guide for teenage girls decrypts and denounces the chains they suffer, in terms of image and sexuality. “Convincing women, from an early age, that they have a problem with their body, is an ancestral technique that aims to weaken them: it is time, money and motivation that do not invest in anything else. wrote the one whose gripping documentary the Trial of 36, on the accusation of rape of a Canadian tourist who was targeted by two BIS police officers, was broadcast on France 2 on Wednesday 27 April.

A wide variety

The tone of the guide is direct, educational, complicit, and the words unambiguous. “There are numerous injunctions relating to the bodies of the girls. I would like this book to allow you to recognize them, to become aware that they exist and the place they occupy in our lives, that this book will allow you to get rid of them.Ovidie writes in the introduction, explaining that she has divided these diktats into three parts: those that weigh down the relationship with the body and the standards of beauty, those that govern relationships with others and sexuality, and those derived from pornography – “The codes of pornography are increasingly present in pop culture”. Girls are the target audience, but the topics covered are equally relevant to transgender, cisgender, and even boys: “If the tomies differ, the background remains the same”, Ovid asks.

The mantra “You do not” punctuates each of the eighteen chapters of the book – “compare yourself to other girls”, “be on a diet”, “do fellatio”, “be in a relationship”, “rub what’s between your legs”, “undergo a vaginal exam”, among others. About sending “naked”, Ovidie explains how this common practice, on which she claims to make no judgment, must be accepted by both parties, the sender and the recipient. And, like a protective older sister, he anticipates the harassment hypothesis, advises: “If a CPE blames you by explaining that you shouldn’t have sent naked and that now you have to bear the consequences, this is not acceptable ”. Diglee’s humorous drawings and bubbles give pride of place to diversity (black, veiled, round, skinny girls, etc.). Enough to allow any reader to feel represented and interested.

Emancipation in all brotherhoods

Ovidie explains, also historicizes, while remaining accessible. For example regarding sexual consent: “We don’t owe anyone sex. Never. […] Still, it happens often (very often, too often). And if it happens so often, it’s because having sex with women has long been taken for granted. “ And to get closer to the notion of “marital duty” which can motivate a divorce request even if the obligation to have relations between spouses is not registered in French law … The guide is in fact rich, it mentions studies, scientific works, phenomena treated from popular culture, articles of the penal code, figures. We thus learn that 90% of the victims of revenge porn are women or when asexual people represent 1% of the population (a theme that Ovidie had already addressed in a radio documentary for France Culture in April 2021). Ovidie also raises some warnings, for example advising children under 15 not to read the dedicated chapter “What we see in the movies” or, for girls who may feel uncomfortable with the topics covered, parties dealing with sodomy, facial ejaculation, group sex, etc.

This is the great success of the book: far from the surplus of a teacher, Ovidie unites in favor of the emancipation of women with firmness but delicacy, and in all sisterhood. He takes his readers by the hand, sometimes giving them a few jokes. “I know that Cristina Cordula would tell you to bet on your strengths, to highlight the neckline, to mark your waist with a belt, but in reality we don’t give a shit! That you wear the belts if she wants, that’s not your problem! It remains only to hope that this necessary test will pass the doors of the schools.

(1) You do not, Ovidie & Diglee, ed. City burns, 12 euros.

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