Tuesday, 19 May 2009


When I was much, much younger I used to read science fiction novels occasionally. By chance I came across the novels of John Norman on the library shelves. Though many libraries have now removed them as some people found them offensive. They described the world of Gor where most women are slaves to their Gorean Masters. I enjoyed this element of the books though wished they had been slightly more explicit.

Gor was an imaginary planet many light years away but there are many today who try to live their lives according to Gorean principles. There are even some Gorean communities.

I find some of the Gorean ideas interesting and have used some at times. However for me living my life according to the dictates of a series of novels would feel much too limiting. I hate being bound by a series of rules - it is what makes me a Dom rather than a sub I suppose.

I am not trying to criticise those who do organise their lives in such a way. Part of me is jealous. I would love my own beautiful Gorean slave girl! But for me the is something just a bit too "Treckie"about the whole thing.


mouse said...

Too trekkie....that's a serious understatement!

My first Master had become intrigued with the idea of Gor when we met a couple at a local Munch. They invited us to their "homestone" (yeah I'd like to see that on Wife Swap). Everything in their lives was based on those books, they even referred to the food the same.

It was cultish. The slaves there took me aside trying to convince me that their lifestyle was wonderful (I'm sure to them it was). In some ways seduce me, with their talk of their real slavery and get me to join them. I found during this conversation that was only why they attended the Munches. It was recruitment.

None of these women had jobs or a way to support themselves. Like I said, it was cultish. However it was the only time and my experience with Gor is limited to them. I have no clue if all are like that but I just felt it wasn't for me. For once Alpha Master agreed with that.


Pygar said...

Thanks Renea.

I hadn't thought of it in terms of cults. That is quite worrying. I am concerned about the way cults can draw vulnerable people in. Cults in this area could be very dangerous and abusive.

Two friends of mine did serious damage to their family relationships through getting drawn into cults. I wonder if others have come across Gorean groups operating in this way?


selkie said...

grins- I actually remember READING the first few Gorean novels way back when and being OUTRAGED at how they treated women.

and while, like you, believe that consenting adults have a right to live their lives the way they like - I cannot take the whole Gorean thing seriously!

I mean, apart from anything else- the novels are written so BADLY - i mean, seriously painful to work through them! I actualy picked up one at a garage sale last year and tried and couldn't get through it!

And then of course there is the whole misognyst thing - sorry - but I see lots of colours, flavours, differences in the world - it is not black and white (i.e. women are slaves, men are dominant) - particularly as the reality is that there are probably far more submissive men in the real time BDSM world than dominant (at least based on our experience).

Cults of any type leave me uncomfortable - and truth is that the rabid Goreans are often VERY cultish.

However, when all is said and done, if it turns their crank and no children or animals are hurt in the process, they are entitled to enjoy and immerse themselves in anything they like!

Pygar said...

LOL - thanks selkie.

I just think you need a strongly muscled, half naked Gorean Master to take you in hand and show you the true way ...

... go on - you know you want it!


selkie said...

damn Pygar, you're RIGHT!! well only if he has a good whip hand LOL - of course I'm not a beautiful slave girl - what did they do with the middle-aged, used subbies like me on Gor? Ship us off to Pern? (brownie points if you know the reference LOL)

Anonymous said...

Would that be the dragon riders of Pern? ala Ann McCaffrey?


mouse said...

I can't speak for all involved in Gor but these people were freakishly cultish, in that dark Charles Manson sort of way. The slaves (eight of them) were all in their very early 20's and late teens. I asked about family and they said things like Master was the only family. They were too happy, too eager, too everything. They asked me if I had fantasies about being kidnapped.

Alpha talked at length with the three men but said they had no interest in trying to recruit him.

Rosie Q said...

Oddly, I just posted about Gor, too. It's good to hear other's thoughts. I wondered about Norman's idea for older women, too. It seems just forgotten about. The books aren't presented as "merely" fiction - they are quite obviously ways for Norman to promulgate his philosophies. They are propaganda for a social system whose assumptions offend me. Yet I find myself still reading...

Pygar said...

I'm afraid I'll have to leave the question of Pern to you and selkie to sort out Magee!

The cult you described Renea does sound worrying - but maybe that is because they were a cult rather than that they were Gorean? But where the two have become combined it becomes yet more worrying I suppose.

Do you think Penny that Norman was propounding a serious philosophy? To me it seemed more like typical male fantasy.

I will have a look at your post with interest.


Pygar said...

My post and the comments so far have been somewhat critical of the Gorean approach to D/s. However I know that many find this approach deeply meaningful and fulfilling. Others may pick and chose some of its techniques.

I would be interested to hear from someone who has a positive story to tell.


selkie said...

magee is right - anne mcaffrey's series on the dragonriders - great reading! and wisdom and maturity were treasured on Pern so my fantasy place will remain there!

oatmeal girl said...

"I hate being bound by a series of rules - it is what makes me a Dom rather than a sub I suppose."

A perfect comment, not just about Gor but about all attempts to say that if you are not doing this or that then you have no right to call yourself any of a host of terms. As if you needed to be licensed by the Academy of BDSM and pass certain rigid exams in order to earn your collar of diploma naming you Master.

That's why I think of relationships, especially BDSM relationships, as some sort of performance art, created by the people involved and continually evolving in shape and meaning. The Dom may set the rules, but it is the interactions that create the art that is their life.

Tristan said...

"the art that is their life"

Well said.

Pygar said...

Thanks again selkie - and oatmeal girl and Tristan.

I think I will have to give up waiting for a beautiful, nubile Goean slave to come along and introduce me to the delights of the Gorean way of life ... so will start a new topic tomorrow!

- P