Why burlesque is a feminist act, Part 1

I feel like one of the first topics that I need to address (and one that I will come back to again and again) is my belief that burlesque and feminism are (pun intended) bosom buddies. This may seem like a surprising combination for some people, and I don't blame you: it was for me at first, too. So here is Part 1 of why I think, at least in this day and age, that burlesque is a feminist act.

The Either/Or Belief. One of the beliefs that continues to persist in modern day society is the "either/or" belief: nice guys have permission to do "naughty things" ("boys will be boys!"), but nice girls are just supposed to be... nice. I've been told that a woman can either embody Jezebel or Mary, but she can't possibly encompass both.

It's so one-dimensional and absurd that it's mind-boggling that people still believe this nonsense. Moreover, it's also incredibly boring. Women are not robots, Stepford Wives, angels or demons. Ladies and gents, let me tell you a little spoken fact: no one - no one - is nice or naughty 100% of the time. Most of us are a satisfying mix of both. The very fact that it's surprising that a feminist could be both a feminist and embrace her sexuality tells me that a good, smart, witty, funny, sexy burlesque show is a revolutionary act of extreme proportions.

She was what?? Smart, funny, erotic and ironic? Damn straight.

Updated Jan 2015