“Two mass terms are merged as one- individual animals into hamburger, an individual woman into an object, “woman.” Through this doubling of objectification, what we have before us is the butchering of women’s subject status.” -Carol J. Adams’ “The Pornography of Meat”, page 25
“Meat Lovers” is an audiovisual exploration of porn and consumption through the lens of Carol J. Adams’, “The Sexual Politics of Meat” and “The Pornography of Meat”. Using humour and the grotesque, the piece subverts the stereotype that women’s porn requires a narrative. By reappropriating the film, “She Prefers the Skin Flute” (1991) through collage and animation, “Meat Lovers” re-imagines the potentially most erotic moments of anticipation as painful and ominous; man prepares to consume woman. Interjecting butcher advertisements which resemble those of sexy women, “Meat Lovers” addresses the links between sex, consumerism, women and meat.
“Asking how do we become objectified pieces of meat is like asking why nobody should see how sausage is made.”
-Adams, page 13.
In “Meat Lovers”, the heroine recounts to another woman an orgy she had with two men while stroking her friend’s shoulder. Women and animals’ different body parts are objective and interchangeable; both can be isolated and played with. The narrator is Caucasian; her friend is black and sporting a wig identical to the narrator’s hair, suggesting fluidity between women and pointing to Carol J. Adam’s idea of the absent referent. While we do not see the process of the animal being brutally killed so that they can be palatable, similarly, we do not see the process of woman’s objectification. The black woman is expected to look exactly like the white protagonist, no matter how artificial. Under consumerism, the individual becomes mass, and further away from being anything but ‘special’.
Through repetition, surrealism, slow-motion and neon filters, “Meat Lovers” demonstrates the complicated and often messy politics of the desire that is simulated onscreen. Flashing images of poultry demonstrate the true nature of the subconscious when initiating a partner. Physical parts, whether they be lips, breasts, or legs are both delicious and disgusting. “Meat Lovers” is a video inviting the viewer to participate in deciding who gets to be objectified and who can really derive pleasure from sex, either simulated or ‘real’. Furthermore, it asks us to question why anyone is eating meat.