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It’s Time to put an end to Prison Slavery

Published on October 30th, 2016

Most people don’t realise that when Abraham Lincoln pushed through the Thirteenth Amendment to the US Constitution, passed in 1865, there was one crucial exception to the end of slavery. There are still slaves in the United States of America and there will be slaves for a very long time.

The Thirteenth Amendment states that “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude… shall exist within the United States.” But adds the exception that slavery remains legal “as a punishment for a crime.”

Even fewer people realise that September 9th was the forty-fifth anniversary of the infamous riots in Attica Prison where inmates called for the end to this slavery, for freedom of political expression and better living conditions. Those initial riots in 1971 at Attica Prison cost the lives of 29 prisoners and 10 hostages.

Yet, nearly half a century later, there are still modern slaves in the United States of America. And most Americans don’t see a problem with it.

In Australia we have the same situation (albeit without directly referring to slavery). But there is no other way to view the exploitation of human beings for profit. Whether the punishment is designed to incorporate slavery; whether it’s what we’re used to throughout our lives in this country; or, whether as long as the sun rises and the sun sets there is no sympathy and can be no sympathy for the plight of a criminal. Our society has long incorporated slavery in the penal system.

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Lust & Passion & the Mind of Jan Saudek

Published on September 25th, 2016

I’ve long been enamoured by the beautiful photography of Jan Saudek; his voluptuous and debaucherous nudes; the sensitivity to sexuality and sensual play; the impressive use of colour, madness, theatre & passion. His style. However, there was something special about watching a movie about him, Fotograf (2015), starring Karel Roden and Marie Málková.

I had always entertained an idea that these photographs were more staged and contrived than they were portrayed in the movie. My mind’s eye imagined controlled studio sessions with employed actors/models under pre-conceived direction.

The reality was more spontaneous. Saudek photographed these people as a part of his ongoing hedonistic lifestyle. These were women who he lusted after and fucked. Participants behind and in front of the camera. A charismatic man, irresponsible, open to life in all the facets of pleasure – a lover, a drinker… an “imagineer” (if I can play with language) at the wheel of the camera.

The only contrivance or staged nature of the Saudek photographs were the convenience of participants to his vision. Their willingness to exist in his sphere. The lovers, the ladies; the whirlpool of personality that is Saudek. Artist. Maestro.

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The Homoerotic Photography of Tamotsu Yato

Published on September 3rd, 2016

The beautiful photography of the Japanese homoerotic photographer Tamotsu Yato (originally Tamotsu Takada) includes three distinct bodies of work created across the span of less than a decade. These works were published in three books – “Young Samurai”, “Naked Festival” and “Otoko” – between 1966 and 1972.

The photobooks of Tamotsu Yato received limited attention at the time. However, the influence this troubled photographer had on the nude male genre, particularly inside Japan, was profound. He pushed the boundaries of how Japanese men perceived their bodies and sexuality in a Japan that had no gay publications. Censorship laws forbade mentioning the genitals in print or photography.

Tracing out the life of Tamotsu Yato is both interesting and tragic. Suicidal and with family conflict, friends say that his first visit to a gay bar in Osaka was in 1956. That night he met the publisher (promoter) Meredith Weatherby. Ten years senior to Tamotsu Yato, Meredith became lover, benefactor, mentor and promoter in an open relationship as they co-existed with filmmaker Donald Ritchie. It was in this early period where Weatherby encouraged Tamotsu Yato to make photographs.

At this time Weatherby was translating the books of Yukio Mishima and their home with Ritchie became a focal centre for artists and intellectuals. Yukio Mishima and Tamotsu Yato became good friends, as evidenced in the introductions and several photographs from the first two photobooks.

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More Articles on StevenClark.com.au

  1. The French Erotic Photographer Hubert Toyot
  2. Jamie McCrossen Should Be Released
  3. It’s Time to put an end to Prison Slavery
  4. Lust & Passion & the Mind of Jan Saudek
  5. The Homoerotic Photography of Tamotsu Yato

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About the Author

Steven Clark Steven Clark - the stand up guy on this site

My name is Steven Clark (aka nortypig) and I live in Southern Tasmania. I have an MBA (Specialisation) and a Bachelor of Computing from the University of Tasmania. I'm a photographer making pictures with film. A web developer for money. A business consultant for fun. A journalist on paper. Dreams of owning the World. Idea champion. Paradox. Life partner to Megan.

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