Porn Wars; or, The Politics of Porn
I have been thinking a lot about pornography lately. It isn’t just the warm & wet-inducing thoughts. Sadly, I have fallen down a deep hole that is the Politics of Porn. It is hard not to when my social media feeds have been inundated with writings about “porn addiction” and “public health crisis” and the upcoming California vote on Prop 60.
I’m sure that I am not the only one who occasionally enjoys a bit of porn to get the juices flowing. But, to me, the adult entertainment industry is more than merely a graphic representation of sex for the purposes of causing arousal. Porn, both written and visual, helped me understand my interests. It gave me a sense that what I was feeling, that what I believed about myself wasn’t all that unusual. It is art. It is a sexual expression, and as such, I believe that it should be protected, just like any other form of expression or speech.
The porn industry has changed over the years, but it always (whether it was intentional or not) pushed the envelope on what is considered decent when it comes to sexual practices. The producers and performers have been front line advocates for sexual freedom. Many performers express a sense of sexual liberation because of the work they do … and we, the consumers, have benefitted from their work product.
How many people have struggled with their desires, not knowing how to open the dialogue with their partners, and have turned to watching a fetish flick to get the conversation started? (I have.)
How many couples have incorporated porn viewing into their sexual relationships to add some spice and variety? (I have.)
How many of us have produced our own (amateur) pornography to capture the excitement and all the feels of a special encounter, or the exploration of something new? (And, again, I have.)
There are a lot of benefits to pornography, for consumers and producers alike. The purported evils have been debunked, leaving only the moralistic objections.
In Episode 8: Dancing with your Shadow, Dr Michael Aaron and I spoke about sexual shaming and the pathologizing of sexual desires. I can’t think of any place where this is more apparent than pornography. Society (yes, a generalization) slut-shames those who are involved in manufacturing pornographic material while consuming vast quantities of the product. Some legislative bodies and medical professionals have also turned their attention towards shaming the consumer. “Porn Addiction” has not been added to the latest edition of the DSM. According to an article on the American Psychological Association website seems to suggest that it is not a legitimate diagnosis, even if porn viewing habits can cause difficulties in some relationships. Even so, there is a very lucrative industry that is ready and willing to treat the problem.
With all of this noise about porn, I wanted to talk about porn, and who better to have that conversation with the legendary pornographer, Ernest Greene? Mr Greene will be joining me on October 19th at 7 pm eastern to talk about various aspects of the porn industry, including the changes he has seen during the course of his career. We will be chatting about the changes to the British Communication Act (which lists 13 acts that cannot be shown in Video on Demand productions), the idea that pornography is a public health crisis, and, with the US elections looming, we will certainly be talking about California’s Prop 60 and why so many who are directly involved with pornography are against an initiative that claims to be looking out for performer health.
As my listeners know, one of the focuses of this show is to look at things from a different perspective. It is only logical that, while I have Mr. Greene on the show, we talk about his book, The Master of O. It is a retelling of Pauline Réage’s The Story of O through the eyes of her Master.
Please join Mr Ernest Greene and myself on October 19th. As always, you can listen live on Spreaker (and participate in the live chat), or you can download/stream the episode from the Spreaker and iTunes archives after the live airing.
Ernest Greene has served as Executive Editor of the best-selling adult magazine Hustler’s Taboo since 1999 and most recently as Chief Associate Editor for Hustler’s All-Sex issues.
Mr Greene, who is particularly well known for his groundbreaking approach to the presentation of unconventional sexuality related to consensual domination and submission, has participated in the production of adult video for three decades as a performer, writer, director and producer. His body of work comprises over five hundred titles, including AVN award winners Strictly for Pleasure, Mask of Innocence, Tristan Taormino’s Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women and Jenna Loves Pain. With his wife, Nina Hartley, he has served as producer and director of the Nina Hartley’s Guide series of adult sex education programs for video market leader Adam&Eve Pictures. The series has sold over three quarters of a million videos to date and now comprises forty titles. His own XXX features for Adam&Eve, O: The Power of Submission, Surrender of O, The Truth About O and The Perfect Secretary: Training Day have won multiple awards and are among the best selling X-rated story-driven titles in recent years.
Buy The Master of O
Two Studies re: Accessibility of Porn & Sex Related Crimes: