Schisms within the spanko community
The global spankophile community of the present is characterized by one big and several smaller schisms.
The adult/child spankee schism
This schism did not exist in the community until after World War II: Before the war, e.g. in early 20th century French spanking literature, adult/adult and adult/child materials were both equally available and in fact often combined in the same work. The same authors wrote, the same artists illustrated, and the same publishers published both "genres". Child spanking photos were not a taboo in those days either, so even in terms of media, the entire spectrum was united. In addition, much spanking art of that time featured spankees on the transition between puberty, adolescence and adulthood.
After the 1950s, a trend set in which separated what was united before. Child spanking art became more and more tabooized, whereas at the same time adult spanking art became more and more accepted. The schism developed fully in the 1970s and 1980s. Adult spanking artists started to publish under their real names and an entire industry of adult/adult spanking products (spanking magazines, spanking videos, spanking pay sites, spanking e-books, etc.) began to develop.
Child spanking art was excluded from this social and economic development. Those few magazines that had featured child spanking fiction in the 1970s either joined the trend to ban child spanking material or went out of business. (One of the last to do so was the Domestic Discipline Digest.) Child spanking artists found their work more and more criticized by spankophiles from the "adult/adult only" camp, up to accusations of creating "pedophile" work or "promoting child abuse". The fictional nature of the material tended to become ignored by the critics. Child spanking art did not go underground, but remained in anonymity/pseudonymity and withdrew to non-commercial, non-photographic and hobbyist areas.
The femdom, femsub and the M/M schism
The adult spanking art camp has relatively close ties with the BDSM community. Spanking is largely seen as something sexual, and BDSM concepts such as dominance and submission and sadomasochism are reflected in the fiction. Within the adult spanking art camp there are certain sub-schisms.
The first is that between maledom/femsub on one side and femdom/malesub on the other. Typically those who like the one don't like the other and vice versa. Interestingly, many of those who like M/F seem to like F/F too, so these two pairings are often (but far from always) combined. The F/M and the M/M camps tend to specialize on their own pairing and not mix too much with the others. The M/M fans and artists are made up of two main groups, the gay on one hand and the yaoi fandom on the other hand, which has nothing to do with male homosexuality and includes in fact a lot of female fans and artists. Some websites/forums (e.g. those of ABCD Webmasters) welcome F/F, M/F and F/M, but do not feature much or any M/M contents. The same is also found in some video producers, e.g. Brooks Applications.
These sub-schisms are reflected in spanking magazines and spanking video productions, which since the 1970s come in four main types:
- F/F (femdom/femsub) - e.g. Chelsea Pfeiffer Entertainment, Clare Fonda Productions, Cutie Spankee
- M/F and F/F (femsub) - e.g. Blushes, Janus, Februs; Lupus Pictures, Mood Pictures, Strictly English
- F/M (femdom/malesub) - e.g. Ma'am, WhAP!
- M/M (maledom/malesub) - e.g. Woodshed, Red Tails; Nick Harmon
The boy and girl spanking schism
In the child spanking art camp, spanking is largely seen as something asexual, due to the undeveloped sexuality of the prepubescent child, and due to the traditionally asexual relationship between parents/disciplinarians/teachers and their charges even after puberty. In child spanking stories, the protagonist is usually not the adult but the child.
Still, the genders of spanker and spankee do play an important role too as they influence the feel and connotations of each pairing. Within the child spanking art camp, most fans and artists seem to have a preference for either girls or boys getting spanked. This preference, by the way, is not necessarily reflected by their own gender or by their sexual preference, and some like both girl and boy spankees. The gender of the spanker is often secondary. So there is a characteristic sub-schism between:
- girl spanking art (F/f and M/f, and the more rare f/f and m/f)
- boy spanking art (F/m and M/m, and the more rare f/m and m/m)
This sub-schism is reflected e.g. by free spanking sites, web forums, web groups and web galleries which are for girl or boy spanking subject matter only (e.g. Handprints, Comixpank, Boyz Being Boyz).
The Spanking Art wiki attempts to be as unbiased and as open to all sub-genres, types, pairings, and age groups as possible, bridging the existing schisms, forming a superset of all topics, and trying to point out not only what separates but also what unites the different camps. For example, a spanking position or spanking implement can be described and discussed in a gender and age neutral way; mentioning gender and age specifics only wherever these are relevant. Terms such as spanker and spankee are used a lot in this wiki because these are most generic.