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Article Review "Do Everyone Have the Right to Sex?"

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These days, in this country, sex has become a hyper-efficient and deregulated marketplace, and, like any hyper-efficient and deregulated marketplace, it often makes people feel very bad

Our newest sex technologies, such as Tinder and Grindr, are built to carefully match people by looks above all else. Sexual value continues to accrue to abled over disabled, cis over trans, thin over fat, tall over short, white over nonwhite, rich over poor.

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To be rabbinical, we’re both right; there are indeed circumstances, if you push my analogy far enough, in which not having a sandwich is oppression, and Srinivasan enumerates some of them. But my analogy was made for a particular circumstance and indeed a particular misogynist, bitter that ‘access to sex is strictly controlled by the woman.’ That is, the woman is supposed to consent and have jurisdiction over her flesh, which he seemed to find oppressive because, as I noted, ‘if you assume that sex with a female body is a right that heterosexual men have, then women are just these crazy illegitimate gatekeepers always trying to get in between you and your rights.’ Srinivasan is arguing that maybe everyone should have a sandwich, and maybe they should, but my one point was that, when you yourself are the sandwich, you have the right to decide who gets a bite of you.

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As can be seen, it seems more and more to me a pointless tradition

The LRB should be progressive and inclusive, not disdainful of its readers. It should be challenging because it deals with complex concepts and is written to the limits of the language. In Amia Srinivasan’s piece on the ‘right to sex’, the word ‘unfuckability’ is used without scare quotes (LRB, 22 March). It is ‘unfuckability’ that is dangerous, highbrow and literary; untranslated French is just atavism.

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