I’ve been meaning to add my own comments to the general controversy surrounding Jimmy Savile and the culture of paedophilia that was rampant within the BBC and elsewhere in the British establishment until relatively recently. To be honest there probably isn’t much that I can add that hasn’t already been said, though I can at least say smugly that I’ve never much liked Jimmy Savile, Gary Glitter or any of those other creepy individuals from that time. The fact they made a living from Pop music but had no real interest in it beyond using it as a vehicle for fame and fortune was already crime enough before it became clear that their real crimes were of quite a different order.
However, the definitive article about the paedophile culture that this all relates to is the one I found in the London Review of Books by Andrew O’Hagan: Light Entertainment. It is unhysterical, thoughtful and the best article I’ve yet read on the whole sorry mess.
The question obviously arises about how paedophilia and on-line sex fiction co-exists. You only have to browse through ASSTR and a few other places to discover that fiction featuring sex between children and adults is fairly common on the internet. It comes in a number of flavours. There are stories that feature the apparent loving relationship between consenting children and adults. There are other stories that are quite clearly not loving at all and stray into various areas of sexual abuse, some of which are at least as unpleasant as the fiction of the Marquis de Sade. Some of this fiction isn’t at all badly written and some is supposedly (and possibly in actual fact) based on real life experiences. Most of it, however, is wish-fulfilment fantasy and execrable in both execution and content.
However, I still don’t believe that the deserved condemnation of criminal sexual behaviour should therefore lead to yet another spasm of censoriousness against such fiction on the internet. But my uncritical liberal attitude has been tested on many occasions, but never so much as when reading novels by the aforementioned aristocrat and revolutionary politicians such as Juliette and the 120 Days of Sodom.