you're reading...
Pornography, Prostitution, Rape and Sexual Assault

Pornography as Violence, Pornography as Rape Culture: Anti-Pornography Commentary Only

Blonde whore forced to suck c*** then f***ed!!
View Movie!!
http://***********

This is the first of a series of posts I plan to do illustrating the intentions of, and reasons for, pornography.  I get thousands and thousands of spam comments day in, day out, almost all of them advertisements for porn.  Right now there are something like 4,000-plus  “comments” — links to pornography, primarily  — in my spam queue.   Most of it is as vile as can be imagined.

I’m tired of talking to pro-pornography, pro-prostitution people, male or female, about pornography.   I think I’m done with doing that.  Discussions with those who are vested in this stuff — who make a living by way of it, who use it all the time, who sell it, who perform in it — remind me of discussions I used to have in my old world with religious fundamentalists who could not be separated from their ideological fixations, obsessions and dogmas by love, money, cogent debate, force, or any combination of the above.  They stood ready to defend their beliefs — and that’s about it.  They were pretty much incapable of even considering the possibility that they might have missed something, might not be seeing something, let alone that they might be wrong.  I always find it perplexing, the way the pro-porn side invokes the spectre of fundamentalism in its arguments or diatribes or propaganda.  My experience is, if there are fundamentalists in this debate, they are on the pro-porn side.

The 11 words at the top of the page tell us what pornography is about.  It is about men forcing their bodies inside of and onto the bodies of women.  It is about men forcing women to do things they do not want to do.   Especially, the words communicate the interest men have in watching women being raped.   We all know a woman is depicted in the film those 11 words advertise, but she is a dehumanized woman.  She has no name;  she is a generic “blonde,” a generic “whore.”  The understanding and agreement between the maker and advertiser and the consumer of pornography is that nobody cares about the names, identities or lives of “blondes” or “whores” or any other woman being raped by men in pornography and nobody wants to know any of that.  The agreement is that the porn consumer should be free to order up a constellation of body parts and the pornographer should stand ready to provide them.  The agreement is the pornographer will provide images of rape and violence which humiliate and degrade already-dehumanized women whose names we do not know.  The agreement, especially, is that this will be sexually titillating and exciting to the consumer.  This is what real men want to see:  “blondes” and “whores” being raped.  Available for cash, at the click of a link.

Comments, as always will be moderated.  Men and women may comment, so long as they are anti-pornography.  At some point, as anti-pornography activists, we are going to have to work to provide some sort of public counterbalance to the weight of the pornographic garbage passing for “discussion” and “debate” which we, and millions of others, find suffocating and deadly.

Heart

Discussion

41 thoughts on “Pornography as Violence, Pornography as Rape Culture: Anti-Pornography Commentary Only

  1. I dislike porn intensely. The primary reason is that I see its sole purpose as the denigration of women. It is also an appeal to the basest instincts in human beings and serves absolutely no positive purpose, as far as I can see.

    Honestly, that’s it.

    Peace,

    ~Chani
    http://thailandgal.blogspot.com

    Posted by thailandchani | September 19, 2007, 11:08 pm
  2. Making the blog rounds this week is a video a man verbally and physically abusing his wife. Feminists are unanimous in their opposition to the man saying to the woman before he physically assaults her. :

    “Look at me bitch”
    “You little slut”
    “You enjoy getting your ass whooped, yes you do”
    “Stupid-ass heifer”

    I watched the video and thought how different the feminist reaction would be if he was raping her while saying all that and worse stuff unacceptable for primetime tv. Then it would be pornography.

    Feminists would no longer be unanimous that scenes of him saying all those hateful things to a woman while doing specifically sexual violence to her on film were abuse. Some would defend it as sexual freedom. Some would praise it as transgressive BDSM erotica and therefore pro-woman.

    No feminist has expressed they believe it is that woman’s free choice to accept the non-sexual violence and verbal abuse he is throwing at her, so why do so many insist prostituted women in pornography make the choice to be physically assaulted and verbally harassed with:

    “Look at me bitch”
    “You little slut”
    “You enjoy getting your ass whooped, yes you do”
    “Stupid-ass heifer”

    Most women in pornography are as cowed into submission as this woman was but unfortunately when men call them bitches, sluts and stupid-ass heifers then sexually abuse them on film it’s defended as the woman’s right to allow herself to be called such hateful terms, to accept men slapping her, to make the choice to be choked.

    If it takes a woman seven attempts before leaving an abusive partner before she succeeds, and women trying to leave face increased risks of violence, why is it I have never heard one single feminist suggest a “harm reduction” strategy that would leave her with her abuser and focus on teaching her how to withstand his inevitable future attacks? This argument is used to deride the Swedish model when pro-pornstitutioners say (without evidence backing it up) that john’s violence increases when women try to leave their abusive situations so we shouldn’t rock the boat by helping women get away, but the well-known threat of increased violence when wives try to leave abusive situations doesn’t garner the same response.

    I’ve got ideas about why it’s popularly considered all right to leave prostituted women with their abusers in the name of “harm reduction” while battered wives get every effort to help them escape their abusers, and all of them piss me off royally with the injustice of the double standard.

    Posted by Sam | September 20, 2007, 1:27 am
  3. “But what about the people who weren’t forced into it?! You know…in a free society! Where everyone was 100% equal and they weren’t coerced and they had any professional opportunity open to them and no girl was ever sexually abused as a child or harassed as a teenager or treated with contempt in the media or ignored by her father in favor of her brother or raped or on drugs and there was no poverty and they just so happen to want to forgo academia for the porn industry because they like it and…”

    What society is this?

    To create the kind of society where porn can even remotely start being considered an option, we’d first have to eliminate porn!

    But apparently, we can’t trample on even ONE privileged person’s right to indulge today in their love of weaponry, even though it’s wielded as a weapon against 99.9999% of everyone else involved? This is not freedom.

    Any time a pro-porn feminist tries to engage with me, I’m going to ask her why she is not a prostitute and porn star (same difference) herself for a living. If she is not, the conversation is already over, punctuated with a head shake and a laugh in her face. But if she is, I’m going to bring her into a room full of women who were sexually abused with pornography, as so many women were and still are. What they help manufacture is not within the entertainment industry, but the arms industry. Let’s smash the delusion, shall we?

    Posted by K.A. | September 20, 2007, 2:17 am
  4. I was in a Feminist Theory class with a lot of pro-porn women and they hated radical feminists, naturally, but their arguments showed an absolute lack of knowledge about not only radical feminism, but about the porn industry itself. So their big thing was always, “Women should get to have sex any way they want and not be judged by evil radical feminists!” And I was like, do you have the slightest clue what pornography is beyond Playboy???

    And what they failed to appreciate is that radical feminists don’t call women sluts or whores or cum-dumsters or any number of dehumanizing terms – the PORN INDUSTRY DOES THAT – you know, the industry you’re so interested in DEFENDING is the one that is most responsible for PUNISHING women for their sexual choices. Pornography is the business of sexualized violence against oppressed people, primarily women. It has NOTHING to do with women’s sexual agency, whatever the hell that is.

    You know the saying, the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist? Well the greatest trick the porn industry has pulled is convincing the world pornography is about sex. Porn is the business of men’s hatred, pure and simple. Hatred for women, primarily, but hatred for most everyone and everything else too. That so many women accept this hatred AS sex illustrates how mired our sexuality is in how men hate us.

    Posted by Amber | September 20, 2007, 2:32 am
  5. Pornography. At its most benign it encourages men to not bother learning how to interact with women. At its most malevolent is conditions them to require violent and degrading stimuli in order to function sexually. That just about says it all about pornography, I think.

    Posted by Kristin T | September 20, 2007, 3:43 am
  6. “You know the saying, the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist? Well the greatest trick the porn industry has pulled is convincing the world pornography is about sex.” – Amber

    ***applauds***

    Posted by ladoctorita | September 20, 2007, 4:24 am
  7. I never understood how people distinguish pornography from rape. If porn had anything to do with a woman’s sexual agency, she would not want money for participating. Submitting to rape is not a job description, nor is it enjoyable.

    I wonder how those who think porn is innocuous could explain why the hackers of the Margins boards chose to stuff them full of pornographic messages and images. They knew what they were doing, inflicting the worst humiliation on Heart they could think of. They made no distinction between porn and rape, possibly because, unlike porn apologists, they did not care to disguise their feelings towards women.

    Posted by Aletha | September 20, 2007, 5:29 am
  8. Porn IS sex; at least as men (and tragically, many wymyn) see it. And I certainly would not want to deny any womyn her sexual choice. However, the only valid sexual choice a womyn can make in this patriarchal society is lesbianism. The only alternative is a lifetime of rape at the hands of a man.

    Posted by Hecate | September 20, 2007, 7:36 am
  9. Wonderful post Heart, and these comments are great.

    As far as I can see, the only reason that pro-porn feminists support porn is that it is an easy way out, particularly if they are porn users themselves. Not challenging pornography means not challenging the status quo, refusing to listen to the vast majority of women in porn who do not want to be there, and keeping men happy.

    Rape is incompatible with women’s freedom, as is pornography. It is absolutely essential for feminists who find themselves aroused by porn to go beyond that, and ask why such and such is attractive, and defeat their own internalised oppression etc. Violence exists in porn and BDSM because violence is done to women on a daily basis. They are not coincidental. They rely upon each other. Refuse to accept pornography and you refuse to accept the abuse of women. End of.

    Posted by Laurelin | September 20, 2007, 8:58 am
  10. If porn had anything to do with a woman’s sexual agency, she would not want money for participating.

    Agency isn’t feminine. Porn is about depicting women at their most feminine – bound (still), gagged (silent), and compliant. That the women are raped while performing this gender role deludes people into believing that porn is about sex, rather than gender.

    (But, then, porn certainly isn’t the only medium [*cough*transpolitics*cough*] the patriarchy uses to deliberately blur and obfuscate the lines between biology and cultural gender performance.)

    It is this performance of femininity for which the whore/porn star is paid, because it is the enforced femininity (lack of agency) that makes it rape – and not a mutually satisfying charge-free sexual experience.

    Posted by justicewalks | September 20, 2007, 12:37 pm
  11. I’m not sure why there is even a phrase such as ‘pro-porn feminists’.

    If porn is a part of your life, a part of who you are well then, you don’t get to claim to be a feminist.

    Get off my feminism with your porn.

    On another note, there is no such thing as a porn “star”. The use of the word ‘star’ is a use invented by males who want to make porn glamorous, want the porn phucks to think that the industry makes them glamorous. Porn is hate. You cannot say it any more simple than that.

    They are Porn Pushers, no different that Drug Pushers. Stop buying into this porn ‘Star’ facade.

    Posted by Zippy | September 20, 2007, 1:01 pm
  12. As far as I can see, the only reason that pro-porn feminists support porn is that it is an easy way out, particularly if they are porn users themselves.

    I agree with this – as someone who used to consume pornography, I think a big part of why so many women are pro-porn is how susceptible our own desires can be to that kind of inhumanity. For a long time I didn’t want to acknowledge the harm inherent in porn was a big part of how I got off. Acknowledging it would have meant I’d have to account for how I benefited from it, and I always knew that an orgasm could never justify that kind of exploitation. It was, indeed, easier to see pornography in simple, cut-and-dry terms of choice.

    Great comments, everyone.

    Posted by Amber | September 20, 2007, 1:57 pm
  13. Reposting this from an old response at Twisty’s (cuz haven’t we all already already already gone over this):

    And since I believe porn is as much a capitalist by-product as it is a sexual deviance I will put into buisness terms why keeping my sexuality free of all this titillation is preferred:
    My sexuality is vertically integrated. I dont have to go outsourcing every damn point of arousal off-shore, pay cheap for the labor and thus sell my self short when it comes to homeland/domestic relationships. R&D, and Manufacturing are done in the same place, thus I can monitor and understand the effects and know what I am giving when the second party enters the equation. At that point the second party does not also become subject to the defects that could have possibly occured had I developed the sexuality through external means. I know what I am giving, and the second party also knows what they are getting.
    This is really the most possible way for consensual sex to take place–for people to better understand their own sexuality and thus better represent it for consideration by party #2.
    I pray for this day.

    Posted by pisaquari | September 20, 2007, 2:52 pm
  14. *waves at pisaquari*

    Hey you! Glad to see you here.

    Posted by justicewalks | September 20, 2007, 3:06 pm
  15. Well, there is way too much good stuff in here. I am starting at the bottom and working backwards. :-p

    I know what I am giving, and the second party also knows what they are getting. This is really the most possible way for consensual sex to take place–for people to better understand their own sexuality and thus better represent it for consideration by party #2.
    I pray for this day.

    This fits perfectly into my whole small-is-beautiful/decentralist/anarchafeminist view of life, which I’ve always had, long before I was ever a feminist.

    There’s this amazing book, Small is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered, by Ralph Shumacher, written in the early 70s, maybe late 60s. It’s about the way technology, globalism (and Shumacher was one of the first to sound the alarm about globalism), technology alienated people from each other, came between people. There is a huge difference between buying a tomato from the farmer down the road and buying a tomato at Safeway. There’s an even huger difference when you grow the tomato for yourself and then maybe trade tomatoes with the neighbor for her loaf of bread. And what if instead of thinking about getting big and making big money, we prioritized the human: small, local, sustainable, nourishing.

    I love what you’ve said there, pisaquari, because it’s along these same lines. Pornography commodifies, sells, globalizes human contact itself. We are not only alienated from one another in these other ways — we don’t know the people who grow our tomatoes, make our shoes, sew our clothes, and we don’t care, we just want the lowest price — pornography alienates people in their “intimacies” as well. What passes for sex is packaged and sold to us and we are as alienated from the seller as we are from the farmer in Chile who dies young from exposure to pesticides so he can get us our strawberries out of season, cheap, just as we’re alienated from the young girl who dies young from an overdose or AIDS or who is murdered so someone can sell us photos of her smiling while she is raped so she can survive.

    We had the vision, once, or some of us did.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 20, 2007, 4:32 pm
  16. “This is what real men want to see: “blondes” and “whores” being raped. Available for cash, at the click of a link.”

    And, as scary as that is….most want it FOR FREE. Because every little girl wants to grow up to be a “free XXX whore.”

    *sigh*

    Posted by freakingdork | September 20, 2007, 5:54 pm
  17. freaking dork,

    You said it!
    🙂

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | September 20, 2007, 7:38 pm
  18. “You know the saying, the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist? Well the greatest trick the porn industry has pulled is convincing the world pornography is about sex.” – Amber or about women being free to do as they please.

    My own thought on porn often get mixed up with the fact that friends often remind me that part of the reason I got into school was due to a portfolio of male nudes. I know they don’t understand the different, sometimes I wonder if I do.

    After posting some things on rape some time back and getting hundred of hits a day using terms like “rape fun”, “fun with rape”
    “raping the ho”, “funny rape” the awful picture of what lurks out there gets only clearer.

    Why people can’t see how porn, especially porn and technology combined, is dehumanizing and severely dangerous when accessed by kids who have yet to learn how to relate to the opposite sex, is beyond me.

    Posted by cooper | September 20, 2007, 8:49 pm
  19. In this most excellent series Heart began, the above reference moved me especially: “most [men] want it [sexual violence against women] FOR FREE. Because every little girl wants to grow up to be a “free XXX whore.” *sigh*”

    Those men not already predisposed to hate women are being trained by media to feel entitled to sexual violence on demand.

    Even the current “non-porn” movie, Who’s Your Caddy?, says a female dancer’s ass “belongs” to the young man who wants to, and does, “slap that ass.”

    Every modern movie has a male dominance theme, some more overt than others.

    Jodie Foster’s The Brave One, just out, has male heroes bookending her actions, beginning and end. What the reviews of The Brave One do not divulge is that a celebration of male supremacy is the subtext. “Someday my prince will come, oh, no, male thugs killed my prince when I nearly died, so by the movie’s end I will have found a new prince …”

    In the Joel Silver (The Matrix)-produced film, after nearly losing her life to the severe brutality of the male thugs, Jodie’s character gets a gun and shoots a man in self-defense who has first shot and killed another woman, the apparent mother of his children, shouting words to the effect of “try to see the kids now.”

    The next guy Jodie’s character shoots has just pulled a knife on her, which he runs down her throat and to her breasts, while asking if she has ever been “fucked” with a knife. Then there’s a male trafficker in underage girls he pimps into whores. The trafficker/pimp attempts to kidnap and prostitute Jodie’s character before she shoots him and frees the kidnapped younger woman.

    This — The Brave One — is the movie heralded by media’s mainstream critics as both feminist and morally ambiguous.

    Meanwhile, courtesy of the seeming harmlessness of G-rated home DVD, young girls are being fed a Disney dosing of re-packaged Princess movies, from meek Snow White to self-denying Ariel who trades her mermaid sea-freedom to grow spreadable legs so she can adore a man.

    Mary Daly’s 21st century books deliberately invoke the spiritual power of Nemesis into these hideous places of the patriarchal foreground. Why not join with her consciousness in doing so?

    Justice has proven unachievable in the realm of pornography cases brought to patriarchy’s courts of law, so here’s to Nemesis, bring Her on.

    I’m also going to the background of the archaic past where womankind reigned in caring connection. There, I can envision our creative cosmic evolution forward without porno’s hate speech turned graphic against all women.

    If, as Larry Dossey, M.D. (a seemingly well-meaning man with vast privileges to research and get published) has suggested, spiritual focus can kill viruses in petri dishes, what might Nemesis do if invoked by women collectively? Not that I’d ever stoop to material acts of violence, but when it comes to spiritual focus, even Jesus cursed that time’s lawyers and other hypocrites with “woe.” As crones of our time, where male lust to violence has become dangerously normal but no less hypocritical, dare we do less?

    Posted by JB Sproull | September 20, 2007, 9:52 pm
  20. I am so delighted to read this post and the comments because I often feel that I am the only person in the entire goddamned world who doesn’t think that having a strange dude come on my face while murmuring misogynist insults at me isn’t Empowering. Why is that such a radical idea???

    Thanks to all of you!

    Posted by Magpie | September 21, 2007, 1:28 am
  21. I wrote something about this on my livejournal (filtered) about 2 years ago after being disgusted by all my sexpos friends ragging on me and then going through my junk mail:

    “Just a few of the sex-positive porn ads I’ve gotten to see today… Without even having to go to a porn website!

    Banner ads from an “alternative” political site:
    “Finding and f***ing America’s sl*tiest MILF’s”
    “Fresh girls getting their cherries popped!”
    “C*m and see their mouths f***ed!”
    “Sl**ty moms getting their holes stuffed!”
    “Break her hymen!”
    “Suck that d**k!”

    Daily junk mail subject line sampling:
    “Hot Jessica Simpson stolen photos!”
    “Dirty lady getting filled by wild c*m”
    “Married b***hes f***ed by huge d**k”
    “Dirty Dirtbag S**t t*t f***ing”
    “Lots of teen movies 4 u!”
    “12 inch dude f***s a teen with a virgin p***y cherry”

    Wow! I feel aroused and beautiful and empowered now! If you don’t like seeing this stuff and dare to speak critically about it, you are obviously a sex-negative Puritan in favor of censorship who is no different from those who oppose gay marriage or the religious right! Because watching some dirty s**tbag married b***h get f***ed is just a beautiful open expression of sexuality and a light hearted expression of fun!
    And if you feel differently, you must just HATE MEN.”

    Note that they all advertise either the idea that women are dirty/bad/disgusting, or advocate and sexualize violence against women and girls.
    There’s no “choice” depicted in these ads.

    Posted by Amananta | September 21, 2007, 1:30 am
  22. Amananta, that’s what I’ve been thinking about, or one thing I’ve been thinking about– there’s so much to respond to in this thread! Anyway, when women justify pornography, it’s, as you say, because it’s something they “chose” and therefore it is “empowering.” But I have yet to see advertisements for pornography that have anything to do with any of that. In general, what is advertised is women being dominated or violated in some way, because that’s what men want to see. Whatever “empowering” or “choosing” is going on is going on in the woman’s mind only, and it seems a lot more like dissociation to me, something most het women have done, i.e., pretending all sorts of stuff during sex, and especially, pretending that the violence they are suffering is something other than violence.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 21, 2007, 2:54 am
  23. To All – I so glad that feminists are proclaiming against porn. I feel that we are often forced to believe that we cannot speak against the harms of porn, but it is so important to speak out.
    I speak as a woman who was forced to view hard-core porn. It did me unspeakable harms.
    I was shown porn as a young child, when I did not have enough information to know what I was seeing. I just know it made scared and I felt sick. But, I was told that it was ok.
    I was being taught to accept the unacceptable. I feel most porn is used as a weapon against women and children. For many women, show outwardly how much some men hate them. Women and children are showed as objects to be fucked into silence.
    In porn, all women of all backgrounds are whores. In porn women become three holes and two hands. This is so hard to know and to accept.
    In my personal history, I feel that porn brainwash to hate myself and to believe all I was an object to be abused. Porn made me believe that I had no right. All I had was the will to survive.
    I was abused by my stepdad, but I also spent too many years in prostitution and anonymous sex.
    I am a long way from that world now. But, I feel that it is so important for feminists and their supporters to expose the ugly reality of pornography. Finally, I think being a feminist and pro-porn is a contradiction in terms. For, how a woman who claimed to be a feminists ignored the torture of other women.

    Posted by Rebecca | September 21, 2007, 2:18 pm
  24. What I don’t get, is how the defenders of pornography do not think there is something wrong by the very fact that the language of pornography is about force. That groups of men are aroused by images and descriptions of rape doesn’t seem to bother them at all, so long as they don’t abuse someone who is not ‘consenting’. And they cannot for the lives of them see the link between these two things- advertising rape as sexy and the worldwide pandemic of male violence against women?! How thick do you have to be to not get it? Well it’s not thickness, I’m being unfair. It’s denial. Better not alienate the men on the left who group all radfems with the religious right because it stops anyone listening to what we have to say…

    end rant… for now….

    Posted by Laurelin | September 21, 2007, 2:54 pm
  25. Hey, Rebecca, thanks so much for your comment. You’ve been through so much, and yet here you are, encouraging me, encouraging other women, telling your truth, saving your own life. Go *you*.

    I’m so glad you’re here.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 21, 2007, 6:10 pm
  26. Well, there’s very little I can say at this point that hasn’t been said already. . I hate porn. End of story.
    I’m not against sex, or even art or other materials that are meant to be titillating as long as they don’t portray sex as about violence or domination . .of course, that’s pretty much almost less than 1% of the sex market.
    Mainstream porn IS for men and it IS about rape and violence and I can’t stand to watch it. I can’t even stand to watch the videos about violence and abuse that many bloggers put up to instruct readers on how horrible it is, like the Jack Venice post. (Not a criticism at all, Heart. . .I just personally can’t bring myself to watch it)
    I’ve been extremely lucky not to have ever been sexually abused, but it still terrifies and disgusts me and I’ll never ever be able to bring myself to enjoy it.

    Posted by Chloe | September 21, 2007, 8:52 pm
  27. I will never for the life of me understand how pro-porn left-wing men can argue that porn is so progressive and that radical feminists are like fundies for opposing it. The entire IDEA behind porn is that sex is dirty and bad, and, um, isn’t that pretty much exactly what the Bible says? If you ask me, porn is extremely anti-sex. And oh yeah, the shit about women being dirty whores — Bible says that, too, assholes. As far as I can see, porn is just Biblical ideas in a different, updated package. It probably wouldn’t be much of a stretch to find the Biblical verses that correspond to almost every single anti-woman epithet uttered in your average porn production.

    Posted by mekhit | September 22, 2007, 6:15 am
  28. Thanks so much for support, and I sometimes do being in a place where I can say truth, has made see that I can have a future.
    I find so hard living in a world where most of porn is see as harmless fun. For example the fashion of “pimping” everything from baby’s clothes to computer programmes. This makes so sad and furious. Personally, I see what is meant by “pimping” when it is not in the context of sexual slavery, but maybe I am just bitter.
    My experience on porn was one of terror and learning to live in a world of lies and hate. So, now to be surrounded by a culture that make all one huge joke, and as if it is glamourous, makes really sick to the heart.
    Many women who have lived with porn in their lives, and come away from that world, are living with the mental scars . So, I think living in a culture where porn is everywhere does mre mental damage.
    I lived with extreme PTSD. I want to live a life where the present and future are more important than the past. But, the pain of my mental, sexual and physical abuses are my second self.
    So, when I hear apologists for porn, especially ones who claim porn is harmless – it makes me want to scream -THAT IS A LIE. No, it that the harms are invisble, for dignity means that I don’t show I was. But, the pain, and grief are in me.
    I do believe that by remembering as clearly as I can, and because I have the skill to write some of it down, that is my form of feminist action.

    Posted by Rebecca | September 22, 2007, 4:19 pm
  29. Quite right Heart , because as Rebecca Whisnant has said, porn is not radical it is not empowering but instead promotes a very conservative view which is synomyous both with male-defined right wing and male-defined left wing ideologies. Both wings believe women are owned by men. Only difference is how this is enacted. Right wing men believe women are owned one at a time within the ‘family’ whilst left-wing men believe women are publicly owned by men. Also note, both wings believe women are innately ‘dirty little whores’ who need to be controlled and constrained by men. One question which has always puzzled me – if men are morally superior why then do they want to dirty their so-called pure little penises by penetrating women’s bodies. Could it be about men proving to other men their very fragile masculine identities? Or perhaps it is a combination of both, fragile masculinities and also men having to constantly prove to other men they are real men by demonstrating how they can dominate, control and sexually torture women. Another aspect is pornograhers are in the business of making money – with the male consumers greedily watching such films which apparently justifies and naturalises their hatred and contempt for women, because at the core is the widespread belief all women are supposedly dirty sluts etc. who cannot get enough of a man/men sadistically sexually torturing them. Yet porn is supposedly fantasy!! Yes, just as the moon is supposedly made of green cheese!

    By the way Hi Rebecca – your post is excellent.

    Posted by jennifer drew | September 23, 2007, 6:59 pm
  30. mekhit said:

    ” The entire IDEA behind porn is that sex is dirty and bad, and, um, isn’t that pretty much exactly what the Bible says? If you ask me, porn is extremely anti-sex. And oh yeah, the shit about women being dirty whores — Bible says that, too, assholes.”

    So true! That’s a smart, insightful retort to those who name dissent against pro-porn ideology as akin to uptight religious fundamentalism.

    Posted by Magpie | September 23, 2007, 9:35 pm
  31. I put “Jack’s” comments and the several responses to it out of their corporate misery. No need to subject ourselves to that kind of thing, that comment was approved by accident.

    Posted by womensspace | September 24, 2007, 12:16 am
  32. Give Accident a smack from me.🙂

    Posted by Sis | September 24, 2007, 12:42 am
  33. “Both wings believe women are owned by men. Only difference is how this is enacted. Right wing men believe women are owned one at a time within the ‘family’ whilst left-wing men believe women are publicly owned by men.”

    True! That’s a good way of putting it, Jennifer Drew.

    Posted by K.A. | September 24, 2007, 12:10 pm
  34. This is the best thing I have read on the Internet in years. Thank you for standing up against the women-hate that is porn.

    Posted by dontmsswme | September 26, 2007, 7:25 am
  35. Thank you all so much. Today I was reading at Pandagon about porn, and was arguing about it. It really makes me feel insane. Coming here is such a huge relief. I really needed to read this today.

    Someone already mentioned this, but I was just thinking about it and think it’s an important point to highlight. All these men and women who like/consume porn-would they be in it? Would they be in the porn they watch? I think I’m going to start asking people about this, when they say they enjoy porn. Because I really think most people would NOT want to do it, and if not, why not? Hmm, maybe because it’s incredibly damaging and degrading??

    For Rebecca- I was also forced to watch porn as a kid. My grandfather was a nasty rapist, and used me in making his own porn. It is horrifying. Porn is definitely used to groom kids and teach them about sexual abuse, that’s for sure. I can’t even really let myself think about it or I’ll go entirely crazy, but my grandfather may still be using my images to get off. I have no idea.

    All my life I have felt like porn is just sick and disgusting and wrong. But, I felt like my feelings about it weren’t enough. No one ever really listened or gave much weight to my feelings, just called me a prude or whatever. I felt like I needed all this intellectual knowledge to prove to people that porn is bad. Now I have that knowledge, but I also now know that my feelings told me everything I needed to know about porn. I just needed to trust my feelings, which is hard to do with people telling me I’m overreacting!

    I just think porn is a huge huge issue, and it’s so divisive even within feminism. I understand where people are coming from, because we are all so brainwashed. But I’m really getting rageful at these “pro-porn/pro-sex feminists.” How do they not see? How do they read all of this stuff and still not see?

    Also, someone wrote in this thread or another about resources for changing the way you respond to porn, I think? I think that is really important, if anyone has any. I did it on my own (I hated porn but would view it very rarely as a self-abusive act). It did take a lot of work and reconditioning, but I can’t believe how much more free I feel. It’s really worth doing, but I can’t even remember what I did to free myself from it. I think that a lot of people probably feel like there is no way to change their arousal, not realizing that their arousal has been conditioned all along.

    It’s a work in progress, and in some ways I know I’ll always have to be watching out for it-sometimes I’ll be “acting” in some way with my boyfriend, and I’ll catch myself and I just get pissed off! But, I’d rather see it and be able to change it, then just be in denial and continue to hurt myself.

    Long post, but whew, I needed you all today! And I have to thank, again, whoever the people were on a thread on IBTP months ago, where I was confronting these very issues, and some extremely helpful people ripped my blinders right off. It hurt, but it was awesome, so thanks. For the first time, I felt like I was actually allowed to hate porn! What a relief.

    Posted by buggle | September 26, 2007, 2:08 pm
  36. Buggle – Your message was very moving and beautifully written.
    I feel that most women that were forced to view porn in their childhood, fel silence by the pain of remembering. It so right to feel disgust, for porn is about torture and degradation. That is disgusting in every sense.
    I do think often that if pro-porners had some experiment of the horrors of porn in production, then they may re-think some of their views. Most pro-porners have a lot of distance from the reality of how porn is made, so can keep their rose-tainted glasses on,
    To see the reality is to the mental deadness that is needed to cope with porn.
    I feel that expressing our hatred of porn is very important. For it not prudish to hate porn. To me, it not extreme violence both physicially and mentally – but also an abuse of human rights.

    Posted by Rebecca | September 26, 2007, 7:35 pm
  37. I agree Rebecca. Hating porn was about getting back in touch with my humanity and with my identification of myself as a woman instead of thinking that the male point of view was the one I should aspire to and go along with.

    Buggle, KA, I thought your posts (and those of the other anti-porn people) over at Pandagon were terrific. It’s a pornalicious place and is not at all friendly to the anti-porn position. Your question Buggle about whether the people who watch porn would appear in it gets right to the heart of what is happening. Of course the consumers wouldn’t appear in it because they understand the degradation – it’s why they watch it in the first place.

    Posted by delphyne | September 26, 2007, 10:52 pm
  38. Thanks, delphyne. Buggle, I must have bowed out of the thread over at Pandagon before getting to see your posts, but I did ask them why they are not in porn or prostitutes (same diff). They said “because society would judge me.” Honestly, that was their response.

    I think if you want to buy porn, you not only have to pay, but you have to make one yourself before the transaction is completed. And I don’t mean making one all comfy in your room with your girlfriend under your own direction, but the same exact way pornstitutes have to do it.

    Posted by K.A. | September 27, 2007, 2:05 am
  39. I hope for a day in which women all over the world can walk free from explotation , humiliation, rape and violence in general.
    pornography is nothing but war against women with a legal license.
    women need to be concientize of the spiritual, mental,intellectual and ofcourse physical dengers of pornography.
    anybody; men or woman who enjoys it is guilty of the devaluement of female kind.

    Posted by freewoman | October 23, 2007, 4:34 pm
  40. Right on, freewoman.

    One thing I feel is progress: those who do domestic violence work now almost all, so far as I have seen, include using pornography as a form of abuse. That hasn’t always been, and it’s really good to see that it is recognized now as a form of abuse of women.

    Posted by womensspace | October 23, 2007, 5:10 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog Stats

  • 2,563,261 hits

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Archives

The Farm at Huge Creek, Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, The Feminist Hullaballoo

206672_10150156355071024_736021023_6757674_7143952_n

59143_424598116023_736021023_5026689_8235073_n

Afia Walking Tree

More Photos