Discussion Friday #5: Is Fifty Shades Degrading Women?

Hopefully every week we will post a new discussion! We are always looking for future ideals so please leave some suggestion HERE 
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This Week's Discussion is:
Is Fifty Shades Trilogy really degrading to women?
Please be aware these are ADULT Books. And we may talk about ADULT themes
Yip, these could go either way. So please no nasty comment they will be deleted. Having an opinion is one thing but bashing the author and just being horrible isn't acceptable on here. 
Siobhán: So I decided to jump on the Fifty bandwagon and I am hooked. I find it interesting that a lot of the articles popping up focus on how it's degrading women! I am like hello have you even read the books?? They are not degrading in the slightest. Personally I found to be the very powerful, yeah Ana is very innocent but Christian tells her everything before their BDSM relationship starts. So she was the all facts and she is the one with ALL the power! If the sub in a Dom/Sub relationship says no it all stops. It's consensual, fun and sexy. If this story was reversed and it was Ana who was the Dom and Christian the Sub would these people think it's degrading men? The people who go see movies like "Magic Mike" is that degrading men? It's a bit of fun and may open people up to more than "Vanilla Sex" to enjoy some "Kinky Fuckery"

Destiny: I really loved the series - it wasn't offensive or degrading at all in my opinion. It was consensual between two adults and showed how fun sex can be. Even if you're already in a relationship, how can Christian and Ana's relationship NOT spice up your own or give you ideas on things to try. Many say her naivete was off-putting, but I for one, thought it was refreshing she wasn't so familiar with everything BDSM so we got to experience it right along with her -  as well as watch the characters grow. I think women should at least give the books a chance - I guarantee they'll probably LOVE them! (And have all sorts of naughty, wicked ideas after)
Charlie:  I personally don’t think its degrading to women. I guess I can understand why some might think it is but my views on it are that I think that it’s actually informative. It might not be the best written novel out there but there is going to be so many women out there who are shy or even ashamed of the things they feel and this book gives them a platform to come out of their shells wherever it be just sharing parts of the pages with their partners or just fantasising about it. Sex is something that used to be a taboo and you couldn’t openly talk about it but we now live in a society where its normal to sit down with a group of girlfriends and a glass of wine and talk about how big your boyfriends penis next to what happened on last night’s soaps which is why fifty works so well because essentially people expect the book to sort of be seen and not heard. Some might argue that fifty is degrading to men but I bet you anything you don’t hear a single one of them complaining after their partners have put it down for the night!"
Marianne:  It seems that the popular opinion that the 50 Shades of Grey books, is that they are degrading to women, however, I whole heartedly disagree. If anything I find them to be very liberating. The whole BDSM scene is very taboo in general. All this book does is show women that its ok and normal to want to explore your sexuality as well as your "hard and soft limits". How is being in tune with your likes and dislikes a degrading thing??

It is safe to say at Totally Bookalicious we are all fans of the books and we don't think they are degrading women. We want to hear your thoughts on this matter. However, I will say this we do respect your opinions but don't judge a book until AFTER you have read it. These is more to these books than sex. It's the relationship between Christian and Ana that has most people hooked.

Let's hear it? Do you think Fifty Shades is degrading women?


  1. I haven't read it. At the moment, I'm unsure I will, but that has nothing to do with the story--though I have to admit, watching all the ladies swoon over Christian Grey is certainly enough to perk a bird's interest, lol. Personally, I don't think it matters what the content is. If folk are enjoying a story, then I see no harm in it. I seem to recall Twilight getting similarly bashed, but what nobody failed to give it acknowledgement for was the fact that teenagers and adults alike, across the globe, were picking this books up to discover what everyone was talking about. It should have commended for its ability to get the world reading instead of being slaughtered because not everyone enjoyed Steph Meyer's writing style. That's pretty much my opinion on 50 Shades, too. I have old school friends on FB, and almost every one of them has made comments along the lines of, "Oh, Mr Grey!"--this is the first reference to a book I've seen from any of them. If it's getting read, the book's doing its job. :o)

    1. My thoughts exactly I mention this the other. The people should be bash people for reading a certain book but applaud them for actually reading.

  2. I loved all three of these books. I didn't feel degraded or felt that it was an abusive relationship.

    I believe that very little people don't understand the idea of a BDSM lifestyle; and I'm no expert myself but from what I read in 50 Shades, it's clear that, if you want to get technical, the sub has the power.

    In no way was 50 Shades an abusive relationship. It was all consensual from two adults. Christian is extremely tortured, and it's Ana that helps him overcome his demons.

    I'm very protective of this book because I love it so much. I don't think judging it based on it being about a BDSM relationship is a good thing. The BDSM relationship aside, this book deals with two people exploring new things...well Ana anyway. Christian finds himself, and opens Ana up to everything.

    I believe 50 Shades will help couples sex lives by opening them up to new ideas to spice up their 'vanilla sex', sex should be adventurous (whilst done safely of course). Everyone should have a little 'Kinky Fuckery' in the bedroom.

    Overall, no, 50 Shades isn't demeaning of degrading to woman, it's liberating, exciting and quite honestly very sexy. I was turned on...a lot when I read it. (TMI!)

    Anyway, that's my piece. I pretty much agree with you all you r girls.

    TEAM 50!


    1. :) wow. Jess. Lol. Thanks for your input. Totally agree with everything you have said. I'm very protective of these books aswell. :)

  3. I loved the books. All three of them. Yes there is some BDSM, but its not just about that or about sex. To me its all about the growth of two people who above all else, when everything seemed staked against them, fell in love. The way they change, opening up to each other, you see it unfolding before your eyes. Neither Ana or Christian was looking for love or expected it to happen.

    It is a love story, above & beyond, its a love story

    To me personally the people who are saying this is degrading to women either have a very narrow mind or haven't even read the books. I read them as a friend recommend them, they are well worth the read, i too protect these books.

    It really annoys me when people bash others for reading a certain book. It happens time & time again, happened with Twilight, now its 50 shades. Don't they realise that by doing what they are doing, it does make some people go out & buy the book.

    I ask those who bash, Does it matter what book it is? what its about? If it offends don't read it then. But don't & i mean don't try to force your options on to me. (Sorry, rant over)

    I'm with you Jess, TEAM 50!!

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  5. I haven't read the book read but I do own it. My friend actually got a loan of it off me first and when she is finished with it I will definitely be jumping straight in to it. Personally I don't see what the big deal is. It's not like this is the first ever book like this to come out. Em hello? The BDB books are FULL of weird sexy shit (excuse the language) and you don't hear people saying that those are degrading to woman. (I LOVE the BDB books by the way). I know I can't really say much about Fifty Shades as I haven't read it yet but from everything I've heard I don't think it's degrading to woman. It's just a bit of harmless fun and if it gets people reading than what's the problem? And if it helps people spice up their sex lives then where is the harm in that? I think EL James got very lucky with how much success the books have gotten because as I said before it's not like they are the only kind of books like this out there. So I think people need to stop bitching about how this sort of book is degrading and blah blah blah. No one is forcing you to read it. There are worse things that have come in to society than a book with some kinky sex in it.

    So that's my two cents :) I honestly can't wait to read the book :) (Sorry about the cursing)

    1. Lol don't worry about cursing haha. I hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

  6. I almost DON'T want to comment on how I feel about this series. On one hand - I LOVED IT... so much so that I go back and re-read those oh so special parts. I do however think I understand why people would say it's degrading to women. Not so much Christian and Ana's relationship, but BDSM as a whole. Personally, I think it's degrading ONLY IF it's forced. If its mutual - then she's taking care of his needs and he's taking care of hers... There may be things in everyone's relationship that someone is going to say is degrading to one or the other, but hey they let blacks marry whites now, and men marry men!!! When my friends found out that my husband and I LIKE a little bondage and a lot of toys WAY before the series - they were ready to get a priest!

    1. BDSM is sexy and can be a lot of fun and go you for liking it. I do aswell ;) when its done properly its safe and kinky. And ANY forced sex is degrading and illegal. These books are a a bit of fun. And honestly I think the people who say its degrading just haven't had a good spanking ;) haha. Only joking people!!!

    2. LOL Siobhan you're right, they havent had a good spanking!!

  7. I have not read the books and most likely will not. The BDSM doesn't really interest me. But also i heard that there are a ton of errors/typos ... and this would make me crazy.

    I don't know if it sounds degrading to women. It sounds like Christian is the crazy one. So maybe it is degrading to men!

  8. At first I was so against reading this series, don't get me wrong I'm not a prude by no means, but I had heard so many mixed things about it. Every time I turned around I was getting asked if I read them, so I finally broke down and bought them on my Nook. I couldn't put the books down! Yes the writing wasn't great, but it got better. I found myself so interested/involved in Ana & Christian's relationship. I loved that she was naive and like Destiny said, we get to have the experience along with her. I completely agree that it isn't degrading to women, Ana was shy & naive, but she never really held back how she felt about her limits & the play room. She grew as a person in confidence due to it all and she got to experience things that she ended up loving. I say go for it!


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