Taste Papi Boom Boom's 10" Uncut Jalapeno!

Mighty Mike Fat 9" of Raw Meat!

Capone South Bronx 10+ Inch Top!

Stallion 11" Inches of Hard Terror!

Obsession Check out His 12" Tool!

Pito Uncut 9-1/2" Horn-Dog!

 

The quotations above, from the covers of Black Inches and Latin Inches, illustrate how the sexualized representations that readers encounter in gay pornographic magazines clearly favor what I call the "monster dick." In this essay I want to examine how the exclusion of men with physical disabilities from representations in Black Inches and Latin Inches helps construct the disabled body as non-sexual—and therefore sexually undesirable. Gay pornography often makes the monster dick central to sex and sexuality, perpetuating a narrative that glamorizes exaggerated size and superhuman performance. The particular way in which Black Inches and Latin Inches depict the monster dick demonstrates how ableist vocabularies create biased and discriminatory perceptions about cripqueer sexuality.

Looking at Ableist Representations
in Gay Pornography

By representing the large, thick, firm and potent penis as essential to maleness, Black Inches and Latin Inches succeed in defining a type of manhood informed solely by vigor and size. Without the monster dick to define what it means to be a robust man, simplistic ideas of penile power and privilege would be impossible to maintain. Even though the monster dick is not a phenomenon embraced by all self-identified gay men, it is frequently regarded as the foundational property of gay male sexuality. It becomes, thereby, the defining symbol for sexual power and control in gay pornography. Black Inches and Latin Inches are only two examples of how its representation helps influence ideas about the distribution of sexual privilege and status.

The monster dick is characterized as having such potent sexual dexterity that it can bring ecstatic bodily pleasure and even harm (the two are often equated) to those it acts upon. The author of "Starting Over," published in the December 2002 issue of Black Inches, likens the monster dick to a volcano, as Kaheem's sexual encounter with Martin unfolds during a fraternity reunion. Kaheem states, "I spread my legs wide and gripped onto the wooden railing, bracing myself for the welcomed assault ... I hadn't expected to take him in one big lunge, but suddenly I was impaled on that rock-hard nine-incher and my insides were on fire ... Martin's spunk blew up my ass like red-hot lava, filling me and searing my insides" (T-Bar, 2002, p. 56).

Kaheem and Martin's passionate coupling suggests that sexual ability—as defined by Martin's monster dick—is always about physically healthy and strong bodies. As this example illustrates, Black Inches and Latin Inches fashion stereotypical beliefs about male sexuality, beliefs that establish the extraordinarily large dick as an all-powerful sex tool, sensual and captivating. Framed in this way, pornographic depictions of the monster dick presume that bodies must appear and function in specific ways in order to be worthy of representation as models of lust and potency. In other words, the monster dick acquires meaning (as a desirable sex tool) because visual and textual representations portray it as sexually omnipotent. Consequently, we must challenge narratives that position the monster dick as the sole locus of sexual desire and power.

My Philosophical Position

In this essay I argue that ableist accounts of the monster dick found in magazines such as Black Inches and Latin Inches construct a concept of manhood that presents well-endowed, nondisabled men of color as over-sexualized predators. This narrative suggests that only able-bodied men of color enjoy the privilege to display their monster dicks, while assuming that physically disabled men of color do not deserve this same prerogative. Such thinking stems from the notion that while homosexuality remains under attack in some quarters, ethnic-homo-sexuality is concealed under even deeper layers of repugnance and antipathy. Add disability to the equation and the quadruple taboo of ethnic-homo-crip-sex -becomes an unspeakable act.

For centuries, racist stereotypes have envisioned black men as savages with insatiable sexual appetites. Similarly, Latino males frequently have been stereotyped as erotic, bestial, macho, Latin lovers, but in both cases these stereotypes are applied almost invariably to nondisabled men of color. Physically disabled black and brown men, by contrast, have been excluded from racist stereotypical representations because they are labeled as either asexual or not sexual enough. I recognize the brutal irony that excludes disabled men from the racist images around which nondisabled men of color have unified. In this essay, nevertheless, I concentrate exclusively on ableist depictions of the monster dick.

Presentation of the oversized dick as powerful and admirable, a sex apparatus belonging only to nondisabled men, perpetuates the belief that physically disabled bodies and sex organs fail to observe the conventions required for representation. In this way, the monster dick becomes associated with an advantageous norm; its prodigious size not only projects power, but is employed as a universal measure for appraising male potency, another way to suggest that sexuality is always about nondisabled bodies.

My focus on the monster dick is one way to dispute the perpetuation of hurtful, ableist representations in gay pornography. Instead of deriving its meaning from nature, creation of the monster dick stems from a human desire to differentiate between power/ability and powerlessness/disability. For this reason, its representations in Black Inches and Latin Inches challenge me to question why the monster dick is depicted as a sexual tool that, we are led to believe, belongs only to nondisabled men.

The "Muy Caliente!" column n Latin Inches, which purports to feature real sexual encounters, introduced the narrative "Super Dick" in its May 2004 issue. In this story Julio, the superintendent of a New York tenement, is described by Frederico as a friendly, older guy in his mid-forties with a powerful, fat, ten-inch donkey dick. According to Frederico, "His body sure as hell wasn't ripped, but he had a nice hairy chest and what looked like a big pinga [dick] bulging inside those old worn jeans ... my jaw dropped when I saw the size of his fucking pinga" (Munoz, 2002, p. 31).

As Frederico, Julio, and Eduardo engage in a threesome, Frederico describes the scene: "As Julio moved behind me and grabbed my butt, I remember thinking that there weren't many things I loved more than fucking and getting fucked at the same time, especially when there's a cock that big to be shoved up my ass. I plowed deep into Eduardo's hot, damp butt and braced myself for the welcome onslaught ... I was so hot for that monster pinga that I would've done anything to get it inside me ... He [Julio] grabbed my waist and held tight as he lunged with plenty of power" (Munoz, 2004, p. 32).

Black Inches and Latin Inches feature similar narratives in every issue, routinely presenting nondisabled men in highly eroticized contexts, while marginalizing or excluding physically disabled men.

I believe that the erasure of physically disabled men's sexuality in these contexts raises moral and ethical concerns that need to be addressed. For instance, both magazines construct sexuality within an ableist and patriarchal framework, one that permits and even encourages nondisabled men with monster dicks to dominate sexual representations. Put simply, this ableist stance invariably suggests that men with physical disabilities are not worth looking at through a sexual gaze, and that nondisabled men should not be sexually aroused by them. In this way, the belief that physically disabled men are sexually undesirable is perpetuated in the marketplace of ideas.

Questioning Visual Representations

Visual images always accommodate multiple meanings and messages, and are thereby susceptible to various interpretations. I can attempt to outline only some of the meanings and messages that Black Inches and Latin Inches potentially transmit. For this reason, I will examine what (and who) is represented, and how it is represented, in order to disrupt the ableist assumption that the physically disabled body is unworthy of representation. The monster dick is overwhelmingly about spectacle because it is all about seeing.

For example, the series "Black Giants" presented in Black Inches and "Gigantes" in Latin Inches features athletic nondisabled men engaging in various physical activities. But the major characteristic that makes both series problematic is the way in which the monster dick is represented. The simple act of seeing a penis is transformed into a particular way of seeing the large penis as a monster dick—and thereby authenticating the monster dick's magnetism.

Because both series, "Black Giants" and "Gigantes," underscore the monster dick as an exclusive depiction of able-bodied male sexuality, it becomes a political tool (pun intended) for ableist pornographic representations. Looked at in this way we can see that the monster dick is a commercial-erotic propaganda device, one designed to convince the average reader that the exceptional body parts depicted might actually exist in the realm of lived reality instead of in a penis-powered fantasy. Inherent in their exclusion from series like "Black Giants" and "Gigantes" is the assumption that physically disabled men are not only different from nondisabled men, they are "less than," and if they are less than, they cannot possess monster dicks, without which male power and sexual desire are inconceivable.

Because the monster dick is marketed as the standard by which we assess male sexuality, men with physical disabilities are forced to compete unsuccessfully with nondisabled men for representation. Perhaps disability itself is presumed to be a condition lacking any monetary value, another reason the monster dick is sold by portraying it as a commodity belonging only to nondisabled men. If we see the monster dick as a "product" whose worth is based on market value, we can more easily understand how men who buy Black Inches and Latin Inches inadvertently consume the images of manhood that such magazines are in the business of selling. By attaching monetary value to the monster dick-and selling it as a commodity belonging only to nondisabled men-men with physical disabilities are automatically excluded from this particular market economy.

Re-thinking the Monster Dick

In Black Inches and Latin Inches nondisabled men are invited to display their monster dicks, while men with physical disabilities are not. This double-standard is used to differentiate between the macho male, vested with the social authority to show off his prodigious parts, and the domesticated, emasculated pseudo-male characterized by what are presumed to be anatomical deficiencies. Readers of these magazines are in thrall to, and will themselves perpetuate, an ableist narrative that envisions male sexuality solely through the lens of abled bodies with moster dicks. Accordingly, the physically disabled body becomes an absence to be made whole, an individual default. Through a policy of omission, therefore, Black Inches and Latin Inches attribute no sexuality whatsoever to physically disabled men, even when they happen to be well-endowed.

In order to dispute the ableist notion that disabled bodies are asexual or unsexed, gay pornographic magazines need to embrace and idealize varied manifestations of physical beauty, without attempting to normalize the "extraordinary body." Otherwise, the monster dick's representation will continue to perpetuate an ableist power structure.

As we formulate a sense of self by comparing ourselves to other men, we are influenced by physical analogies. However, while the nondisabled men who enjoy sovereignty in Black Inches and Latin Inches are granted the privilege of defining ideals such as physical beauty and sexual desirability, the disabled men who have been marginalized, or "othered," are compelled to identify with able-bodied corporeal standards. For this reason, we need to closely examine how the monster dick perpetuates ableist perceptions of male sexuality.

To begin with, the types of bodies represented in Black Inches and Latin Inches must meet certain criteria that fulfill male selection. Men with physical disabilities are dismissed because their bodies are considered sexually unappealing to the male gaze. If this were not the case, representations of men with a variety of visible physical disabilities would be plentiful in the pages of Black Inches and Latin Inches. In "So, You Wanna be a Porn Star?" published in the December 2002 issue of Black Inches, Clarke outlines some prerequisites to succeed in the world of gay pornography. He asks, for example, "Have you got what it takes? That is, do you consider yourself handsome, well-built and with universal appeal? When you undress at the gym, do you hear gasps or get whistles? Do you have a big dick? While not essential, in this industry it is preferable. And, frankly, the bigger the dick, the better the chance you've got to get someone's attention. How long can you keep an erection? Can you get hard and keep it hard for hours at a time?" (page 18, bold in the original text).

In addition to this article's ableist narrative, the March 2003 issue of Latin Inches presents Diego Alvarez as a "Bathhouse Freak." In the featured interview, "Diego Alvarez: Best of Both Worlds," interviewer Vincent Lambert asks, "How big is your dick?" and Alvarez ansers, "I have never measured it. In fact, I always thought I was small." VL: "Well, I hear it is big." DA: "I love to hear that! Thanks!…" (p. 16).

The interview with Alvarez demonstrates how the monster dick continues to signal power because very often the careers of pornographic models such as Alvarez depend on promoting and marketing themselves as men with monster dicks. Another example of the standardized and formulaic presentation of the monster dick as a powerful commodity is illustrated in the photographic layout, "Yes, Sir! May I have Another?" by Abednego in the March 2003 issue of Black Inches. The pictures highlight Ben Gaines' nine-inch dick. As these examples show, most of the visual and textual narratives in Black Inches and Latin Inches insist that the monster dick be viewed with admiration and desire.

For example, every issue of Black Inches and Latin Inches features letters to the editor, giving readers an opportunity to express their likes and dislikes. A letter written by B.T. in the December 1998 issue of Black Inches states, "…that big, mouth-watering piece of man-meat hanging down between his legs had me drooling!" (p. 6). Another letter, signed Dick, published in V2, N4 (1999) of Latin Inches indicates, "…the truly awesome Kiko. I went crazy, for his absolutely huge, oversized horsecock. What a donkey dong!" (p. 8). And a third letter, sent by Adrian, and also published in V2, N4 (1999) of Latin Inches reads, "I confess that I also love humongous penises, especially when they're thick and have mushroom heads…" (p. 9). These letters attest to the construction of the monster dick as an enticing—and therefore marketable—attribute.

Apparently, men who have monster dicks can achieve wealth and stardom. For example, Kiko has attained popularity as a Latin heartthrob by highlighting his monster dick in Latin Inches. On a continuum extending from handsome to unattractive Kiko's slender five-foot-eight-inch frame would fall somewhere in between, lacking any attribute that might be considered exotic. Yet, Kiko's ever-popular craved and relished nine-inch dick is what positions him as almost uncannily desirable.

Kiko's advice column, "What's Up, Kiko?" was designed to establish rapport between Kiko and his fans. Of particular interest is the alluring manner in which he is photographed by Phaze-X. For instance, one of the photographs in V2, N4 (1999) of Latin Inches flaunts Kiko's penis by having him lie on his back, enabling him to use his shoulders and legs to propel his torso and hips forward and upward to accentuate his genitals. Finally, he uses his right hand to lift into position his monster dick in order to intensify the illusion of massiveness (see Latin Inches, page 40), thus encouraging men who gaze at the picture to turn fantasy into desire.

The Penis Medicalized

By attributing ownership of the monster dick exclusively to nondisabled men, gay pornography trivializes the physically disabled man and makes him a bystander. Categorized as deviating from the ideal sexualized body, the disabled man's presumed physical deficiency stems from society's insistence that his body is compromised and damaged. Ultimately, his whole anatomy, including his penis, is presumed flawed.

A host of pathologies involving the penis and its function are associated with lack of manliness. For example, impotence or erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, the loss of erection during sex, and the inability to reach orgasm through sexual intercourse, to name a few, have come to be considered deficiencies that should be treated, cured, or prevented medically. Therefore, men whose anatomical configurations do not conform to the highly prized monster dick are considered disadvantaged and impaired. As a result, because men with physical disabilities are not acknowledged as subjects of sexual discourse, they are marginalized, and even worse, commodified as pseudo-men.

Because Black Inches and Latin Inches have helped to construct the monster dick as the quintessential male body part, the preeminent symbol of sexuality, it follows that we are meant to see the more sizable and powerful penis as evidence of the more sexual man. It is no wonder, then, that penile enlargement, enrichment, and restorative products and procedures abound. These include enlargement procedures consisting of exercises (also known as jelqing), and manual regimes designed to stretch erectile tissue. Products such as vacuum pumps are designed to produce firm and quick erections, and all-natural herbal pills are marketed with the promise to expand, lengthen, and enlarge the penis. If any of these products fail to produce the desired results, surgery is available as another option.

Additionally, impotence often bears the implication that its manifestation is self-imposed. Men classified as impotent may be told that their habits or state of mind caused their condition. Attempts may be made to remedy erectile dysfunction with behavioral therapy, medication, or psychotherapy, depending on whether its cause is classified as pathological, pharmacological, or psychogenic. In addition, surgically implanted prostheses are available in the event of permanent neurological damage. These products and procedures are designed to increase penile size and power, to improve sexual desire and performance, to augment erections and ejaculations, and to reinstate "normal" sexual performance.

The relentless fixation on the monster dick as the preeminent site of able-bodied sexual power marks the physically disabled man as unworthy of erotic display. As the makers of gay pornography capitalize on falsehoods constructed around the monster dick, their creations normalize and standardize stereotypes about male sexuality. In doing this, magazines such as Black Inches and Latin Inches benefit from substantiating the myth that men's unfulfilled and unsatisfied sex lives would be greatly enhanced simply by possessing either their own or someone else's monster dick.

The apparent absence of men with physical disabilities from Black Inches and Latin Inches suggests that society still trivializes their visibility and representation. However, their exclusion should inspire us to question why the male gaze primarily centers on monster dicks attached to nondisabled men. Although the representation of men with physical disabilities does not in itself determine their social advancement in society at large, their invisibility definitely contributes toward their marginalization. Therefore, in order to recognize men with physical disabilities as sexual beings they must be seen in sexualized contexts. Otherwise, disability will continue to be regarded as inconsistent with sexuality. In other words, being disabled will continue to be viewed as being asexual.

Conclusions

In this essay I attempt to question why the presence of men with physical disabilities is strikingly absent from the gay pornographic magazines that I have examined. Physically disabled men have achieved substantial gains and have built new identities through their own individual and collective narratives. Nevertheless, men with physical disabilities continue to be excluded from representation in gay pornography, which is most often constructed through an ableist gaze that insists on a normalizing view of how men should look and behave.

By challenging ableist representations that produce the monster dick as enticing and all-powerful, we can hope to afford disabled men the opportunity to participate in gay pornography instead of being sidelined as passive consumers.

Thanks to advances in technology and marketing, visual imagery enjoys a broader cultural impact than ever. For this reason, their exclusion from visual representations in gay pornography is profoundly diminishing to men with physical disabilities, a clear statement that their bodies lack beauty, sexuality, sensuality, and commercial worth. Devalued as inferior and unfuckable, disabled men suffer feelings of shame, melancholy, and loss. Consequently, I argue here that the construction of the monster dick highlights the body as a political structure. Because only nondisabled men are recognized as attractive and erotic by gay pornographic magazines, it is only they who can display their monster dicks. Thus sexual subjugation becomes the role of their disabled counterparts, a condition that furthers ableist ideas about what constitutes desire, and denies disabled men opportunities to speak about their own sexual experiences.

Maleness and manhood have often been defined through ownership and control of sexuality, access to sexuality, and decisions about sexuality. These same issues are of course central to men with disabilities. Therefore, once we expand the concept of sexuality to include men with physical (and other) disabilities as sexual and sexualized beings, we can obtain a more comprehensive understanding of maleness and manhood, one that prevents the lumping together of men into one nondisabled, monolithic group.

As we pursue the goal of including men with physical disabilities in gay pornographic magazines, can we concurrently disrupt the monster dick's privileged position? In other words, as men with physical disabilities gain representation, how will these representations challenge us to re-define the monster dick? Will it cease to exist altogether? If it no longer influences or defines normative gay-sexuality, will well-endowed, nondisabled gay men loose their sense of manhood and maleness—or even their sense of sexual arousal and pleasure?

Regardless of the response to these questions, ultimately, men with physical disabilities need to gain meaningful representation in gay pornographic magazines such as Black Inches and Latin Inches. Only then can they and others begin thinking about and looking at the disabled, male body as sexual, sensual, beautiful, erotic, and powerful.

©2006 Santiago Solis
Photo and header design ©2006 Mark McBeth, IDEA | MONGER

 

REFERENCES

*Abednego. (2003, March). Yes, sir! May I have another? (photographer). Black Inches, pp. 58-65.
*Adrian. (1999). Flattery will get you everywhere. Latin Inches, 2, (4), 9.B. T. (1998, December). Torri glory. Black Inches, p. 6.
*Clarke, E. (2002, December). So, you wanna be a porn star? Black Inches, pp. 18-21.
*Dick. (1999). Big banana. Latin Inches, 2, (4), 8.
*Lambert, V. (2003, March). Diego Alvarez: Best of both worlds. Latin Inches, pp. 16-22.
*Munoz, F. (2004, May). Super Dick. Latin Inches, pp. 30-32.
*Phaze-X. (1999). What's up, Kiko? (photographer). Latin Inches, 2, (4), 38-41.
*T-Bar. (2002, December). Starting over. Black Inches, pp.52-56.

 

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Santiago Solis is a school teacher and graduate student at Teachers College, Columbia University. As an educator who strives to ground his work in critical pedagogy, Santiago often uses popular culture to challenge ableist assumptions about the human body. To that end, he examines disability representations to offer alternative, more positive ways of conceptualizing "disability."

 

 

 

 

 

BENT: A Journal of CripGay Voices/March 2006