Porn and the “liberal” press

Petra Joy

My blood is boiling. I am so annoyed by Gail Dines’ article about the AVN and porn in general. It is the latest in a long line of anti porn articles in the supposedly liberal Guardian. Especially the last chapter of this article really pissed me off:

“One of the seminars at this year’s expo is called In the Company of Women. Here academics will mix with pornographers to share ideas on how to develop niche products targeted to women. I’m sure there will be lots of talk about how women can be empowered by watching porn, because the pornographers, being the savvy businessmen they are, like nothing more than telling women that porn is actually good for them. This is their “trick”, and one we must resist if we want to replace the plasticised, formulaic and generic images of the pornographers with an authentic sexuality based on our own experiences, longings, and desires.”


Petra Joy

What this article does is assume that all women working in porn are performers and who do not enjoy their work. It negates the existence of any female porn directors, events such as the feminist porn awards and also the (increasing) number of women who enjoy watching porn.

This article therefore victimizes and patronizes all women. It is an angle on porn which is very dated, stuck in the eighties, rather than embracing all the new trends in porn.

What about the women who choose to express themselves in porn or the women who watch and enjoy porn because it inspires them or turns them on? Gail says we do not exist and all porn is bad when she has only seen the tip of the iceberg. If you go to the most commercial adult event on the planet such as the AVN show, don’t be surprised if you get the ultra mainstream and commercial end of the stick.

If the journalist had visited an alternative event such as the pornfilmfest Berlin she would have experienced a whole new world of porn: workshops on feminist porn, debate and discussions between the audience, performers and makers of the films and innovative films by indie filmmakers who don’t like or promote plastic either. This is not even a NEW trend – the pornfilmfest Berlin and the feminist porn award Toronto have been around for half a decade now.

Petra Joy

It is time to recognize the many new creative saplings that have been growing for quite some time now.

There is not just one kind of porn but many different kinds, including non-commercial, alternative porn that does indeed empower the women and men who watch it.

The kind of porn I am talking about breaks not just porn stereo types but also questions gender roles that society has created for us and wants us to conform to.

One of these stereotypes is that men produce and watch porn and that women and don’t like porn, as they are not visual and always want romantic emotions attached to any sexual experiences…

This is simply not true and to perpetuate those myths means seeing the world of erotica in black and white when in fact it shimmers and shines in all the colors of a rainbow.

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