Tuesday, January 23, 2007

oh, ick: when the money shot is a little too...money

In Raw World of Sex Movies, High Definition Could Be a View Too Real - New York Times

there are so many things wrong with this article, i can't even begin to list them. but the biggest is that it assumes we should care that the porn industry (enough with the antiseptic 'adult industry' moniker) is wringing its hands because we can see all the razor burn and augmentation during the money shots. um, no.

what's fascinating and appalling about this piece is the way it accepts at face value the female sexbot ideology of the industry and turns it into a matter of business practice. while sony shies away from the porn industry and distribution the pornographers tsk and say "it is shortsighted of Sony to snub them, given how pornography helps technologies spread." well, pornography helps other things spread, as well.

remember the guy who created Girls Gone Wild? the men who, over the summer, killed those girls in two school shooting sprees (remember the amish school shooting)? i don't think it's too extreme of me to say that the female sexbot ideology that porn transmits created these men and influenced their acts. i don't think it's too far afield of me to say that porn, more than just exploiting women's bodies (and that's too simplistic an argument to make against porn because of the participation of women in the industry, i think), makes it possible for our culture to see women merely as receptacles, objects, holes and mouths and wet pink things. it dehumanizes us. it desensitizes us.

(if you've seen any porn for any length of time, you know what i mean. and, yes, i've seen porn.)

and so here's this article, taking dehumanization one step further and making it part of an industry's strategic business plan, deflecting our gaze from what porn actually IS to see it as just another circus of smoke and mirrors (like Hollywood, the article implies.)

so, thanks, new york times.
you've just given the cleanest patriarchy blow job ever.


Molly Malone said...

it definitely slants toward "okaying" the rigors that women have to go through for the medium. if nothing else, it sort of wink-nudges it.

porn depresses me. i won't say i haven't found what very little i've seen titillating - stupidly titillating, but nonetheless ... but ultimately it's saddens me. willing participation aside, the yardstick by which i suppose to judge the acceptability of activity is: is this something you'd be proud of or even okay with your son or daughter engaging in? it's kind of the same thing with organized crime. maybe there are people who would be proud to have pornstar or mobster children, but i have think most people want better, more dignified futures for their kids.

but i also strongly suspect those drawn to porn or organized crime also have negative or destructive family histories.

Jean/Gene M. Beebe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ding said...

hmm, i don't know.

i mean (and i'm no prude), i'm aware of erotica that's made for and by women (suicidegirls.com, for instance) that is sexy, sex-positive and does not seem 'exploitative.' i'm also aware of women to engage in some forms of sex work (like stripping) who have chosen that line of work on their own, chosen terms. (i went to grad school with a woman who made a living from stripping and later got a book deal from it.) and, yes, i'm also aware of the women in the porn industry - the women directors, writers and performers - who have chosen to work in a more 'female-positive' framework (they create erotica that's more plot-based, less money shot-oriented, so to speak.)

but i'm not talking about how the individual porn stars feel while performing in porn; i'm talking about the affect of porn on us as a culture. while a performer might look at it as just another type of job or even as the best kind of job there is, the affect of porn, IMO, is to make us forget that women are subjects; it is to make us only aware of women as objects.

what does repeated viewing of porn train us to prefer or numb ourselves to? (who cares about ol' vanilla missionary when there's the bold new frontier of double anal, you know??)

when the visual stakes keep getting raised like this, how does porn begin to inform our gaze and our expectations? how does it begin to flatten our view of womanhood? (and basically reduce all men to anonymous penetrators?)

so. can porn be good? it can be titillating, yes. but can it be good? not in the long run.

Molly Malone said...

there's something called double anal? yikes!

ding said...

um, yeah.
it's something to behold.