Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Jewish Currents Says: "Happy Birthday to Nina!"

Spank me if you must, but I am a victim of Spock Shock.

Having been major-league distracted by the death of Leonard Nimoy - my childhood idol, inspirer of America's first female-authored hard-core porn ("slash"), nude photographer of plus-sized women - I forgot that today was Nina Hartley's birthday.

But you know who did NOT forget?  Jewish Currents magazine, that's who!  In their Jewdayo daily feature (inspired by Harry Belafonte's classic 'Dayo'), they hit the nail on the head 650 times:

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Porn actress and entrepreneur Nina Hartley (Marie Louise Hartman) was born to communist parents in California on this date in 1959. Her mother was Jewish, from Alabama, her father Lutheran -- and both became Buddhists. Hartley was studying to be a registered nurse when she entered into adult films in 1984; she achieved her nursing license, but with 650 porn films on her resumé, she's mostly used porn rather than medicine to "heal the sick." Hartley has described herself as a socialist and a sex-positive feminist, and is an outspoken defender of the industry in which she's made her career. If you're in it "for the wrong reasons," she says, "it's going to hurt your spirit. That's where the religious right is correct." But porn, she argues, provides a righteous and well-paid career for women who are highly sexed and free-spirited, and women in the business have high status and clout. Hartley has appeared at hundreds of feminist, free speech, show biz, and porn-industry venues; she sees herself as a sex educator and liberationist. "
Sex isn't something men do to you," she says. "It isn't something men get out of you. Sex is something you dive into with gusto and like it every bit as much as he does." To see her giving a talk about communication and generosity in bed, click here and scroll down. To read her talking with Sheldon Ranz about porn and Jews (in Shmate magazine, way back when), clickhere.

"The drawback of being in the adult entertainment business is that mainstream culture does not take me seriously. They don't take my ideas about sex seriously.... They still think that they get to point and judge. They still think they know something about me ... and conclude that I must be mentally ill, I must have had a bad childhood, I must be unhappy ..." --Nina Hartley
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On this Jewdayo in 2014:  
Ezra Jack Keats (with video) 
On this Jewdayo in 2012:
The Hanafi Muslim Siege
On This Jewdayo in 2011:


  1. Note: The Jewdayo section does have the correct date of Nina's birthday- March 11 - in their section header.

  2. Sheldon, I thank you on Nina's behalf for remembering and I'll be sure to pass this on to her so she can reply either here or there or both. It's lovely, especially in hard times like these, to be reminded of the worthwhile goals for which we fight. Nina has been true to her beliefs all through the vicissitudes of the longest continuous career as a performer in the history of the medium and the reward for that is the respect and admiration she enjoys from those to whom her mission has been a source of inspiration.

    And personal thanks from me too. It's my good fortune to be married to Ms. Hartley but it's all our good fortune to enjoy the benefits of her unshakable belief in the ability of intimacy to make us whole.

  3. WOW...after all this time, I forgot that today was Nina's birthday, too. I will definitely cosign what you and Ernest said +100, and add that no one else shaped my personal views on sexuality and porn the way Nina Hartley has...and is still doing even to this very day. I can clearly say, with all love and credit to Renegade Evolution, that without Nina, BPPA doesn't even exist.

    Of course, Ernest gets first dibs on the lock and key of true love for her...but the rest of us whom have benefited (and do benefit now, and who will for the future, too) from her life and legacy as a sex pioneer and progressive activist, share in our own way our love and devotion for her.

    Happy Birthday, Goddess...and may you have many more.

  4. Oh, and BTW...thank *you*, Sheldon, for contributing that post. For a while, I was beginning to think that BPPA was a one-man show. Can't live on "Porn Panic" updates all the time, you know.

    The full text of Nina's Shmate interview is over at my SmackDog Chronicles blog; I will transfer it over here in its entirity soon as my tribute to Nina.