Laurie Taylor column

June 1, 2001

Undergraduate students of social science are more likely to be involved in the sex trade than those reading other subjects - THES, May 11 .

Hello, big boy. You're through to Babette. Would you like me to tell you what I'm wearing?

Yes please.

Well, I'm wearing my black spiky high-heeled shoes and my silk stockings and my tiny mini-skirt and my very tight sweater. Oh, it's so-o-o tight. Does that sound nice?

In a way.

What is it, big boy? Don't you like what Babette's wearing?

Well, I'm marginally concerned about the manner in which your outfit reinforces the stereotypical view of woman as necessarily constrained.

I know what Babette can do about that. Babette can take off all her naughty clothes. Would you like me to be naked?

Not quite naked.

You're thinking of Roland Barthes's insistence upon the nothingness that is revealed at the culmination of the striptease act?

Very much so.

Listen, big boy. It's so exciting to talk dirty to you like this but you only have another minute before your money runs out.

That really doesn't matter.

So you're not into any quasi-Reichian notions of orgasmic fulfilment?

That's right. That's right. Go on.

You want more of that talk?

Please.

Right. SURPLUS REPRESSION.

Yes, yes, yes.

REPRESSIVE DE-SUBLIMATION. POLYMORPHOUS PERVERSITY.

Thank you, thank you, Babette. May I ring again?

Of course, Professor Lapping. And if you're a very good boy I'll give you a wave from the back of the lecture theatre next Tuesday morning.

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