There’s a discussion going on in the comments over at Tiny Nibbles right now about another in the endless line of hypersexualized deliberatedly-controversial fashion photoshoots. You know the ones I mean — they push the porn line a little bit, wait for the nattering nabobs of feminism to condemn them, pull the ad campaign or claim it was just a conceptual shoot never intended for broad release, and then sit back and wait for the viral controversy traffic to spike their brand awareness among the hard-to-reach internet-active demographic.

This particular social media marketing campaign hit pay dirt when Jezebel condemned their photography as “creepy and porno-like”; by essentially calling porn creepy, Jezebel set off half-the sex positive bloggers in the universe, and it was off to the races. Presumably there will be a big end-of-the-year gift basket arriving at the Jezebel offices from this social media marketing agency in appreciation.

I was going to stay out of it completely — call it my part of the effort to train these people to buy display advertising like their Mad Men ancestors — but in the discussion at Violet’s place, there was an interesting conversation about the submissive poses of the woman in some of the photos, and whether it would be different if the woman were dominant, and just how rare it is for these edgy fashion shoots to feature dominant women and/or submissive male postures.

Now, in fact fashion shoots that reverse the dom/sub polarities don’t strike me as all that rare, but I didn’t have examples at my fingertips. And then, serendipitously, I stumbled over a nice one — so that’s today’s blog post sorted.

This comes from a Marie Claire US photoshoot from last January. I found the photos here, and it’s actually not very sexualized as such things go. The starring model, Miranda Kerr, never shows more than a little side-boob, in one of those stupid “I’m wearing the expensive coat but I forgot my shirt and my bra” photos that fashion photographers love so much. But there’s a surf/beach theme, culminating in this powerful “empress and her slave bearers” shot which is actually kinky as hell if you look at it with any gaze more careful than “Hey, look, she’s sitting on those beefy dudes!”

miranda kerr borne by four beefy male surfer dude slaves

(Don’t forget to click for embiggening.)