The Real Reason Women Are Hot for 'Fifty Shades of Grey'

stack of cash

E.L. James' blockbusters -- and the brand spankin' new (see what we did there?) movie -- are definitely about sex -- so much that some people would argue that there is no plot, good dialogue, or interesting characters. But we digress. The collective brain of the Internet is now theorizing that Fifty Shades' real attraction to women isn't sex at all. It's because it fetishizes money.


After all, it's hard to imagine Anastasia being as attracted to Christian Grey if he worked in a factory, drove an ancient Buick, and was too cheap to pay for cable. The dude is all about money.

Sure, he started off with a rough childhood and a prostitute for a mother, but the Christian Grey we all know (or read about on Wikipedia because we haven't read the books) is a Harvard-educated, mind-boggingly wealthy CEO with an extravagant lifestyle.

And as writer S.E. Smith argues over at, it's this component of Grey's character -- that is, his "immense wealth and power, not just what he has to offer sexually" -- that appeals to women.

(Smith also points out that some of the book's biggest fans hark from the country's poorest regions.)

We checked this theory with some experts. Who agreed.

More From The Stir: Interview With a Real 'Christian Grey' With a Sneak Peek Into His Sexy World (PHOTOS)

"Women are more attracted to the fairytale lifestyle that Christian provides than the sex," said Dr. Carole Lieberman, a Beverly Hills psychiatrist.

"Money represents power. It's a sign of control and success, and that is attractive to women," explains Dr. Gail Saltz, a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst in Manhattan. "Having money speaks well of a man because it assures that he can provide for you."

Not to mention that having unlimited cash means having lots of toys and being able to indulge in some pretty awesome opportunities. Christian takes Anastasia in a private helicopter, up in a glider -- "it's all very Superman-esque," says Saltz.

How much a moneyed man appeals to your "inner goddess," of course, will depend on lots of things, from how you grew up to what your financial situation is now, Saltz says. 

Would Fifty Shades be as appealing if Christian Grey were poor?


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