Female Virginity in the Free Market: Vaginas Objectified?

Coffee is delicious, though not all beverage stalls sell good coffee. Yet by paying bigger money, there is a greater chance that we might get ourselves richer cups of commodified caffeine – more concentration, sweetness, and textural satisfaction in those greedy mouths of ours.

Coffee seems rather similar to the female body – as in, the vagina. How much do they pay to get themselves delicate slices of vagina that are of utmost quality – more concentration, sweetness, and textural satisfaction around those greedy penises of theirs? Which vagina-shop sells vaginas of virgins? What is the current market-price of first-hand vaginas? Calm down, I have a few more questions.

Are they looking for vagina-manufacturing factories? They are probably planning a one-day trip to the vagina factory because they have yet to witness the process of manufacturing vaginas. Especially those vaginas that – when grabbed – are as tight as new. Others tell them that vaginas are mass-manufactured in the bodies of mothers, to which they react: “Oh, really! Wait, are vaginas living things?”

They seem to see vaginas as mass-marketed items, same as caffeine, vehicles, books, toys, and computers: they can buy and use, buy and use, and buy and use vaginas. They always seek newer and tighter vaginas, do they not? Because as time passes, vaginas lose their market value – vaginal tightness deteriorates, aye – just like diluted coffee, ten-year-old sports cars, or outdated smartphones. Virgin vaginas are precious goods for them.

Vaginas are Now Objects

Until here, I have actually been describing how patriarchal members of society view the vagina: they see the vagina as a valorised object in the social market of dominant patriarchy. Vaginas are now tradable goods with attached market values, and the sexual value of the vagina varies according to the total number of sexes it has gone through; and if she is a virgin, she is perfect for them – this is exactly the problem.

Consider the recent Malaysian case of parliamentary sexism: many are still angry at Mr. Shabudin because he champions marriages between raped girls and the rapists. But there is something else other than his disgusting idea as we read his words describing rape victims:

“Sekurang-kurangnya dia ada suami dia, ada orang yang boleh jadi suaminya pada ketika itu. Ini adalah satu remedi kepada masalah sosial yang berlaku.”

As translated by the New Strait Times:

“At least she has someone who can become her husband. So, this will be a remedy to social problems.”

There is something ideological. Let us see: did he not imply that a woman sans virginity will encounter difficulties in search for a husband? Hence, marrying the rapist is ‘at least’ a solution to her ‘virginity-less’ womanhood?

By saying that, he clearly holds a thought that most in society see female virginity as the significant trait of a ‘clean’ woman. Or shall I put it this way: if she were not a virgin, she would be a woman of ‘low quality’. Ultimately though, how widespread is this idea? I tell you: many of us have already unconsciously taken it as fact.

Patriarchal Oppression

In December last year, 18-year-old Khefren auctioned her virginity online. She then profited a clear-cut £1.6million after paying a 20% commission to Cinderella Escorts, an organisation which blatantly sells female virginity. In fact, there is more evidence of virginity-auctioning.

Marketing and advertising virginity – or in uglier terms: selling ‘fresh’ vaginas – is a choice of women, true that. No matter how frustrated we are, feminists recognising women’s freedom of choice cannot condemn some women for making some relatively unusual choices. Yet, even though I completely respect their decisions, I have to point out that I can hear the slogan of the vagina-monopolising forces: “Long Live the Patriarchy!”

Source: flickr.com

Source: flickr.com

Patriarchy – the dominant force sustaining male power – relies on deep-rooted sexism to flourish, such as this silent yet prevalent strand of gender discourse: “virginity is the most precious feature of clean women”. Such an idea constructs an unnecessary weakness of women, that patriarchy exploits by placing price-tags on women according to the quality of their vaginas. Women, the capital owners of the vagina, are then ultimately objectified as sex tools. The most worrying case, nonetheless, is that many in society are unaware of such derogatory, powerful evil.

Consider as well how such ideology oppresses young girls: is there not a higher chance that parents would warn their daughters to ‘be careful out there’? Young girls are constantly warned because if and when they are sexually harassed, or have had pre-marital sex, slut-shaming occurs. Unless their virginity is dedicated to the legal husbands, she is a ‘whore’ or a ‘slut’.

Rise and Challenge the Patriarchal Power

This has to stop. Virginity-marketing could be a profitable source of income, but dominant ideas about virginity also strengthen the patriarchal monopoly of women. If we ever want to empower women, we must understand that it starts with eradicating sexism – the sexism that stems from the socially constructed idea which objectifies and stigmatises the female body, virginity, and the vagina.

Let us ask a collection of questions before discussing rape cases, the victims, and the rapists. Is virginity really the most precious trait of a female? Is a female downgraded when she is not a virgin anymore? More significantly, are females merely objects, of which we can dispose according to the overall texture of their vaginas?

We have to challenge this sexism, and remember: we do not need to be fooled by this millennium-old capitalism of the patriarchy. One more question though: to the reader who is a non-virgin male, is it fair if society labels your penis as cheap goods?

Written by Teoh Sing Fei

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or positions of the editorial team at IGNITE.

Featured Image Source: www.indiegogo.com

"All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." (George Orwell, in Animal Farm, 1945)

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