In the past year, by selling about 70,000,000 copies, Fifty Shades of Grey became the #1 book of all time. I ask myself why? 2 unsatisfactory answers are usually given: people want to read smut, and the writing is good.
Lurid literature has been around for years – Harlequin romances have been sold since the 50s (according to Wikipedia) and they must sell – they’re in every department store – but they don’t sell anywhere near as well as 50 shades. I can’t judge the writing quality since have not read it, and will never do so; the Wikipedia article was more than I needed. However, I checked it out on amazon.com and the top 3 reviews, which don’t touch on moral issues, give it 2, 1, and 1 star – real quality writing.
I think we need to look elsewhere. What distinguishes BDSM from any other relationship? The need for trust. If you you’re going to let somebody tie you up and hit you, you’re going to make sure you trust them 100% beforehand.
If you look at our culture it seems that there is nobody to trust. Everyone is a minute away from falling. Reading this junk, there seems to be someone you can trust. The trust is superficial but it is trust.
Instead of preaching about the evil of these books, might it be better to create an attitude of trust for teens. If a teen trusts you, and especially if this trust is developed and deep, there’s less need to turn to salacious visions of trust. We should lead them to trust God.
[Note: I wrote this over a week ago so it is not a response to Life Teen’s blog about the same book.]