Sex is the new politics, Porno is the new Rock'n'roll

For a few years now, I've been saying that Sex is the new politics. Sex and Politics have a long history of association, and many theoreticians have written about it, throughout the past century and this one. What is new today is that Sex, thanks to many factors (from body modifications to the Internet), seems to have the same role that politics had for the 60s and 70s generations. Take generational conflict, for example: Sex today is the most effective detonator for this crucial element of everyone's adolescence. Hair, clothing, music, politics (as it was in my time) or even piercings don't work anymore - but sex still does, very well. Older folks know that there are elements that define them as a generation, as opposed to the generation before theirs: in my case it was Punk rock. I believe that what will define the current 14/24 generation will be a different approach to sexuality.

If this is true, then these new ethics and behaviors clearly need a carrier, one as effective as Rock'n'roll (and all the music that derives from it) was for the 60s and 70s generation. One that can deliver an urgent message with the appropriate style and language, and be effective not only for its content but also (and perhaps even more) for its ways, its approach and coolness. Just like Rock'n'roll. And I have good reasons to believe that the new porno, the one made by the thousands of small independent labels (like Innovative ProdActions in Berlin, or Desperado's Domain in the US) and directors like Bruce LaBruce, Simon Thaur or Blaise Christie, is fulfilling this role as I write.

What's more, if this is true, then Irving Klaw is like Chuck Berry, Anita Feller like Aretha Franklin and Thaur like the Einst├╝rzende Neubauten. And I can't wait to see what the new, younger people, digital savy and fresh, will produce with the tech object that in many ways seems to have the same appeal electric guitars had in the 70s: the digital camera.

Sergio Messina
october 2008

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