Sydney Morning Herald Dec 11, 2009
Marie-Louise Olson (she interviews Diane Riley from the Australian School of Tantra and the director of Sexy and Sacred Workshops for women.) Writes….. In an era of rampant female sexuality it’s ironic that women’s genitalia remains taboo,
The vagina. When was the last time you said the “v” word without snickering?
In an age of skin-baring pop stars, rampant internet porn and the sexualisation of young girls, it seems ironic that this innocent little fleshy bit with its nuances of pink and purple is still considered the most taboo area of human anatomy.
Recently on the Sydney radio show I co-host we had a candid discussion about the names we call our love tunnel.
But as terms like “pussy” and “punani” came out of my mouth and straight into the airwaves, I involuntarily found myself turning a shade of pink and purple as well.
Why is it still so hard for women to talk openly about our cho-chos? Diane Kerry, the director of the Australian School of Tantra, says it is because our society is still inhibited by the past.
“It’s a refection of where we are. We think we’re a really sophisticated society, but as far as sex, we’re not,” she says.
“It’s a real hangover from our grandmothers’ Victorian generation.”
Perhaps we simply need a sexy, but respectable, name for our front bottom … anything but va-gi-na.
Names for the vagina, which directly translated from latin means sheath or scabbard, are continuously changing over time, but probably the most universal nicknames for it are pussy, muff, cootch, twat and c.
Australian feminist and scholar Germaine Greer once said that the latter “is one of the few remaining words in the English language with a genuine power to shock”.
C is a recognised word and can be found in various English-language dictionaries including our own Macquarie dictionary, where it is defined as “the female genitalia” as well as “a contemptible person”.
Kerry likes to use the word “yoni”, which in tantric means sacred place.
“I take my vagina to the gynaecologist, but I use my yani for my sexual being, my sensuality,” she says.
In various indigenous languages it is referred to as “nungle” and “kuckles” (also the name of a Broome-based band).
In French it is called “la chat”, “tarte au poile” (hairy tart) and more politely, “le foufoun”.
The dubious colloquialism “hokey” is used to describe a loose foofa.
According to the urban dictionary, the term is derived from the song The Hokey-Pokey, meaning you can put your left leg in and shake it all about.
TV show host Oprah Winfrey even has a name for it – the vajayjay.
Then there’s foofa, box, pink, cock massager, one car garage, sperm dumpster, hoo-ha, axe wound, lady bits, china, vulva, blossomful of nectar, muffin, toolbox, velvety love folds, pastrami meat flaps, pin cushion, catchers mitt, cuckoos nest, the wound that never heals, bearded clam, beef curtains, tunatown, vertical taco, bajango, catpipe, nozzle trap, bushburger, front wedgie, meat hole, fanunu, pecker wetter, dirty south.
Come to think of it, maybe vagina isn’t so bad after all.
The writer co-hosts the womens’ radio show Double X on Sydney’s Radio 2SER