When I say "dominant" here, I mean "sexually dominant". And what I mean by "sexually dominance" is a desire for, a want of, a sexual arousal and satisfaction resulting from being in control of sexual interaction.
That's it. Nothing else and nothing more. I'm not claiming it as a correct definition, or the best one, it's what works for me and what I mean when I use this term.
Understood like that, dominance/submission is not even a "kink" in the way most other kinks are. It's more of a preference, a style of doing sex and relating in matters sexual, a dimension on which everyone who's not asexual can be placed. It's a "how", not a "what".
In its more extreme forms, it finds its expression in formal D/s or other kinks that are often included under the BDSM umbrella.
But it's of course also perfectly possible to have kinks which often correlate with dominance/submission without being obviously dominant or submissive. Sado-masochism, cross-dressing, sensory play, exhibitionism, pegging are often used as part of D/s play but can also be done without power exchange or counter-intuitively to their obvious associations. A masochistic dominant flogged by her submissive or a female submissive anally pleasuring her male dom are just two obvious examples.
This confusion between specific kinks and dominance/submission combined with the Hierarchy of Worthy Kink often seems to result in somewhat disparaging comments the high clergy of HoWK make about "fake doms", "vanilla kinksters", people being "just bottoms" and a whole lot of other snobby, hierarchical bullshit.
All that is well known stuff. But stay with me a little longer. What if we look at it from the other side? What if we remove the kinks from dominance/submission?
I believe it's perfectly possible. I believe you can be sexually dominant or sexually submissive and not have any "kinks" that would be recognisable as kinks - no freak to get on, no paraphillias, no weird shit arousal triggers, no fetishes, not even liking for rough sex.
It's surely possible to be "traditional vanilla" in everything you do - let's say, prefer piv sex in the bedroom, with low lights and no props, a bit of oral - and still be dominant or submissive: to deeply enjoy and get off on being in control or being controlled.
It's accepted that "vanilla kinksters" are prowling all around. I give you vanilla doms and subs, dear readers. They are out there, not even hiding, in plain sight. Ask your auntie Dot.