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Lady Gaga, the pop sensation who took home a shelf-load of awards at the 2010 VMAs last night, has clearly taken style inspiration from Madonna and Marlene Dietrich, says Camille Paglia in The Sunday Times (UK). But, despite being a "ruthless recycler" of these noted sex symbols' fashions, Gaga is ultimately asexual. In fact, the use of sex in her videos and fashion spreads is "creepy and coercive." Her "over-conceptualized and claustrophobic" erotic persona represents "the exhausted end of the sexual revolution." Here's an excerpt:

Despite showing acres of pallid flesh in the fetish-bondage garb of urban prostitution, Gaga isn’t sexy at all – she’s like a gangly marionette or plasticised android. How could a figure so calculated and artificial, so clinical and strangely antiseptic, so stripped of genuine eroticism have become the icon of her generation?…

For Gaga, sex is mainly decor and surface; she’s like a laminated piece of ersatz rococo furniture. Alarmingly, Generation Gaga can’t tell the difference. Is it the death of sex? Perhaps the symbolic status that sex had for a century has gone kaput; that blazing trajectory is over…

Read the entire article at The Sunday Times.