I read an article online recently about a controversial magazine cover (French Vogue) that pictured a man with his hand around a woman's neck. Women's advocacy groups objected to the depiction they saw as abusive, as if the man was about to choke the woman or otherwise harm her. They said the cover glorified violence as an act of love. But the imagery was clearly meant to be sexy, not abusive.
As an erotic romance author, I've had acquaintances and even a family member accuse me of writing sexist books that objectify women. If the man slaps the woman's backside, pulls her hair or ties her up, they feel I've crossed the line from sexy to sexist and abusive. I beg to differ.
In certain situations, a little manhandling can be very erotic. Now, if my heroine has a history of abuse, that type of sexual activity wouldn't be sexy at all, but in general, many women find that type of play arousing.
Hell, all we have to do is look at the popularity of books like Fifty Shades of Grey to confirm that lots of women enjoy a little roughness when it comes to sex.
Everyone has a right to his or her opinion, but my advice is if you don't find such depictions sexy, don't read the book, don't buy the magazine. Maybe I'm being overly sensitive. What do you think? Does this type of sexual play constitute sexism or is it sexy?