Women and Sex Have Become the Absolut Vodka Ads of the Frum World

Remember the Absolut Vodka ads that established an iconic brand by creating a cutout of a Vodka bottle. The Absolut Vodka bottle might not have shown up in the ads but it was there in negative space.

Women have become the negative space of the frum world, their very absence highlighting their constant presence.

In the Tznius mindset women have been reduced to sex and sex is the great negative black hole enveloping the frum world and reshaping everything around it. Gender segregated streets, pictures of women photoshopped out of newspapers, new tznius standards, the rise of pornography and new Kol Korehs warning about immodesty. These are the borders around the Absolut ad, the great dark space we try to avoid looking at lest we fall hopelessly into it.

Why do we fear that darkness so much? It isn’t simply a fear of women but of control. The Gedolim need to control us and we wallow in so much guilt over the excessive churmas that the darkness has come to represent our own inadequacies. The extreme has become the holy, forgetting that the other extreme of Kedusha is Kedeisha.

By turning women into sex objects in the name of Tznius, we have fragmented personal relationships and marriages and the fabric of our society. We’ve denied ourselves access to the talents and contributions of half the Jewish people and patted ourselves on the back for it for our self-righteousness, our self-discipline and self-sacrifice, refusing to admit that behind it all is fear. Not fear of women but fear of our ourselves.

4 thoughts on “Women and Sex Have Become the Absolut Vodka Ads of the Frum World

  1. Rudy says:

    Wow! I would concur. Very powerful. Very well stated. You open eyes!

  2. Lemon says:

    You hit on some strong points here.

  3. Very ell put, I like the Absolut ad analogy. However, you are also very misinformed about many things. As someone who (presumably) doesn’t live in Haredi Heartland, you may not know exactly what’s going on. The Kol Koreh’s etc., get a great deal of publicity, but there are things you just don’t see. Like the mad rush of frum women (of all streams, but especially hassidim) who do everything to look like bona fide Hollywwod whores, even if adhereing to the literal wording of ‘tznius standards’. (Forget for a second the fact that they spend tens of thousands of dollars on slutty clothing while their main source of incomes are different welfare programs.)

    What really should be decried is the shalowness and superficiality of Jewish education, to try to inculcate not rigid tznius standards but a deep understanding of the women (and men) themseves that they are more than just T$A’s. For all of their screaming and kicking against “Western culture”, it has sept into haredi society more than anyone would like to admit.

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