Sarah Irving

I do things with words, mainly English and Arabic

Gail Dines on porn

Excellent article in yesterday’s edition of The Age on the impacts of pornography. The title given to the piece – presumably by a sub – is ‘How the hardcore porn industry is ruining young men’s lives’. To which my emotional response, is: Aaah, diddums. Your life isn’t half as ruined as the women who get forced into the sex industry or the ones you can’t have functional relationships with because your desire for women who conform to your nasty little ideas screws you up (and yes, I know not every woman in the sex industry is forced into it, and I respect the right of women to use their bodies in the sex industries if that’s what they genuinely want to do. But that doesn’t detract from the fact that many women don’t want to, but through trafficking or poverty or addiction are coerced into it). But actually (well golly gee) the title and the content of the article are only loosely connected, and the latter is much more interesting than the headline makes it look. BTW, I don’t agree with every aspect of the article; I agree with many of the commentors on the original who think that Dines spoils a good piece with the closing statement that “there is no room for porn in a just society”. Of course, that depends what you mean by porn – and some people would use the term erotica to enable some kind of differentiation – but without acknowledging the distinction or that it is possible to have arousing material featuring nudity, sexual activity etc without it being inherently exploitative and damaging, Dines does the overall argument a disservice.
Gail Dines’ own website is here. The Wikipedia page on her work, with links to critiques and reviews, is here.

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This entry was posted on May 19, 2011 by in The Media, Women and Feminism and tagged , , , , .
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