“Fifty Shades of Grey” will debut in some theaters on February 13; it opens wide on Valentine’s Day. The movie is based on the best-selling book by that name, authored by British writer E.L. James. It features a young woman who submits to being beaten by a man.
Bishop Richard J. Malone, Chairman of the Bishops’ Conference Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, says that while the book and film “are marketed as a romantic story,” it is really nothing more than a “graphic portrayal of a young woman agreeing to be abused and degraded in a sexual relationship.”
Cincinnati Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr has joined with the Religious Alliance Against Pornography in condemning the movie. “The story line is presented as a romance, however, the underlying theme is that bondage, domination, and sadomasochism [BDSM] are normal and pleasurable.”
Bill Donohue, drawing on his experience as a sociologist, agrees with these assessments, and offers his own analysis. Because of the nature of the conduct that constitutes BDSM, readers should know in advance that his article is itself a graphic depiction of some very real, though sick, behaviors. To read it, click here.