The Warrior Princess Submissive, by Michael Makai
This book is a fun read. Mr. Makai has an engaging style of writing, and i imagine his book reads just the way he talks. He tells great stories ~ some funny, some poignant ~ and i think it’s worth reading.
i like his description of the archetype of Warrior Princess Submissive ~ keeping in mind it’s an archetype, not an individual ~ and i think i have many of the characteristics he lists. He has a quiz too, and based on my responses, i hit the Warrior Princess Submissive category. Of course, that only proves that i think i fit the definition, but that’s good enough for right now. It’s always fun to read things that seem to be about oneself.
Mr Makai is sometimes a bit ~ o, dear, how do i say this nicely? Ok, let me back up. He’s a Dominant, right? So you know how Dominants can sometimes say things that seem just a teeny bit dogmatic? And if you challenge them on it, they’ll say, “Well, yes, that’s just my opinion.” But it’s said with complete confidence that their opinion carries a great deal of weight.
That’s not a bad thing. It’s just how they are sometimes.
Mr. Makai is not an exception to that. And this serves him well as long as he’s talking about D/s and BDSM. Even if you don’t completely agree with whatever he’s saying, it’s his field of expertise, he’s got stories to illustrate the idea, and he seems to have a foundation for his opinions.
When he starts talking about feminism, he raises my eyebrows a few times. He’s in my territory now, and it’s easy to over-simplify feminist concepts. He talks about the idea of being a “stealth sub,” which is fine. He talks about submissives who are into domestic service being “driven underground by the prevailing notions of the day.” And he says
“Surely you’ve taken note of the fact that any use of the politically incorrect term ‘housewife’ is virtually guaranteed to spark a heated debate and the term ‘homemaker’ is only slightly less controversial?”
That makes me sigh, just a bit. Issues about being a housewife or homemaker are so much more complex than the terminology, and invoking the term “politically incorrect” suggests that the issue is merely a matter of semantics rather a substantive basis. It ignores the fact that there are entire movements out there that totally support a ’50’s lifestyle – not just the Taken in Hand folks, but the Quiverful movement and any number of evangelical Christian groups.
The way Mr. Makai frames the question suggests that the only question here is whether or not you’ve noticed this phenomenon he’s talking about. Really, i could probably write an entire blogpost about why that one sentence bothers me.But there’s no point in getting bogged down in that kind of exercise. i’m willing to ignore those blips in the book and follow the substance of his discussion.
He does a nice job articulating the difference between BDSM and abuse. i appreciate that, and it makes me feel a bit more confident about his underlying belief system.
But he loses me again when he begins to predict the future for our society in regards to D/s and BDSM practitioners. He says:
It won’t be long before the BDSM lifestyle is made society’s scapegoat for the perpetuation of a rape culture; for glorifying the systemic hatred, victimization, and abuse of women. Never mind that these societal ills have been with us since the dawn of time. Never mind that both men and women are victimized and abused in the general population…”
To support this belief, he quotes one article, which is very anti-BDSM. He goes on to talk about how the erotic aspects of BDSM have created some interest and acceptance, but predicts:
Once the vanilla world comes to the realization that the BDSM lifestyle does not bear any real resemblance to the fictional works of erotica authors who have never even dipped their toe into a BDSM relationship, the pendulum will inevitably swing hard and fast in the other direction. Suddenly, the typical vanilla person’s reaction will be, “Wait! You mean he tells her what to do outside of the bedroom? He controls her? He treats her like property? Who the hell does he think he is? This is the twenty-first century! Nobody should be able to get away with treating a woman like that! It’s abuse. It’s the worst sort of misogynistic exploitation!
He gots on to say:
This sort of pontification will go virtually unchallenged, both in private conversations and in the national media, since there will be few outside of the BDSM lifestyle who know enough about it to effectively refute the diatribe and because it is perfectly unreasonable to expect anyone to publicly come to the defense of these alleged abusers of women. Any efforts by Dominants to defend themselves and the lifestyle in general by employing the usual arguments and rebuttals will be perceived as disingenuous and self-serving by the public. The harder they try, the worse off they’ll be.
By which point i’m thinking “Really? What makes you think that’s gonna happen?” Sure, i guess it could, but he says it like it’s the only possible trajectory. i think there are a multitude of other possibilities, some of which i think are more likely.
He goes on to suggest that when society turns against the Dominants, we Warrior Princess Submissives are going to jump out of our closets and save the lifestyle. That’s the part that Master Michael from Our Master/slave Journey objected to in a comment here. Having read the book now, i can agree with him. Even if Mr. Makai is correct, and the villagers are going to come after us with pitchforks and flaming torches, i don’t think the solution is for the Warrior Princess Submissives to all jump out of our closets and fling ourselves on the villagers yelling “AH HA!! We’re submissives too!! Don’t you feel stupid now???” (Ok, that’s not exactly what he suggests, there’s some poetic license on my part.)
Instead, i think we all have a role in managing this potential worst-case scenario, and i’ll be back tomorrow to talk about what i think our role is and how we might do it. In the meantime, i think the book is worth reading. i love the Warrior Princess Submissive archetype and think the book could stimulate lots of thought about how BDSM fits into our culture ~ or the culture you live in ~ and whether you think there are helpful ways to promote mainstream acceptance of the ideas we live by.
Makai, Michael (2014-10-02). The Warrior Princess Submissive (Kindle Locations 1994-2043). Michael Makai. Kindle Edition.