Occlusion: an alternative to penetration?

“Circlusion” is a word made up of the combination of the prefix cir- meaning “all around” and the base -clusion, which derives from “to enclose”. It thus represents the action of enclosing something over or encasing it. In the sexual domain, to enclose the penis through the vagina, anus or mouth.

“Circling”: What could this quirky verb mean?

The roots of the verb “circlure” might give you a clue. It is a word made up of the prefix “cir” resulting from the Latin radical “circum”, “around”, and “clure”, derived from “clore”, to “enclose”, from the Latin word “claudere”. “Circling” is nothing other than the act of putting on, wrapping around or encircling over during sexual intercourse. Here, the man performs penetration and the woman circulates, in order to speak only of the heterosexual relationship.

Circlusion, a way of changing the perspective of how sex is perceived

Circlusion is a neologism that first appeared in an article written by German feminist and philosopher Bini Adamczak in 2016. The article reveals that it is a word for talking about sex in a different way. According to the column, the word is useful given that the afflictive fixation on penetration continually dominates the heteronormative fictional as well as the queer imaginary. Without demonising penetration, society considers it a mandatory act in any sexual relationship. Despite this, the term is fraught with undertones. Indeed, penetration also comes with the idea of one individual dominating another, literally: That one is underneath and the other on top, or: That one waits while the other does all the “work”. This is, of course, completely false. Occlusion, on the other hand, reshuffles the deck. In the sexual relationship, the individuals who were previously considered passive take on an active role. They are the leaders of the dance.

The fundamental nature of penetration “called into question

Carla Delente, a specialist in sexuality who has been waiting impatiently for this moment of revolution, says that in terms of the major research on the libido, it has taken a long time for the fundamental characteristic of penetration to be questioned. The sociologist Nathalie Bajos, for her part, attests that the era of “hetero-penetrative” representation is now over. Practices have changed and a new scientific paradigm has emerged. From all this, the classic scenario built on the chain of preliminaries-coitus-male ejaculation is over, which is well seen by many people, especially feminists.