The clip that Amit showed in class from The Price of Pleasure really made me re-think my ideas about pornography. I did not attend the screening of the film, because I could barely handle the trailer that we watched, and I decided it would be too intense for me. But, I did start thinking about it. I never really thought too much about porn before, and basically had no real opinion. I think there definitely are people who could enjoy working as a porn star, and as long as they had thought about it and made an educated decision, I would not have a problem with the actual person. And then I was talking to a friend of mine, and she said she was all for porn, as long as it wasn’t too degrading or insulting to women. I agree, and I think gang-rape, violence, and inclusion of animals is going a bit too far, but then where do we draw the line? Is porn with just one man and one woman acceptable? How intense can it be before it gets too violent? What about orgies? Is it okay if it is something that people would do normally, and then unacceptable if it’s too extreme? But that’s an arbitrary distinction, because there will always be some people who are into all sorts of unusual things.
Also, as the clip mentioned, pornography is often the first and sometimes only form of sex education that children receive, and is obviously not a healthy education. But then should there only be very simple pornos so that children will not learn bad behaviors? It’s additionally difficult, because I think porn affects all people differently, and some people can definitely watch violent porn without perpetuating that same violence in their personal lives. But, in order to not be affected, I think the person would have to have a healthy and educated attitude toward sex. Often this is not the case, which is why these violent pornos can affect the viewers so radically.
There is also the issue of feminist porn, which my friend is all for. I would ultimately like to see that documentary about it, because I feel like I do not know enough about it to make a statement. But, the Lusty Lady was known as a “feminist” peep show, which does not mean that the women were treated any better or that they were showing their bodies any less. If the same is true of feminist porn, that the women are basically treated the same and perform the same tasks, then there is virtually no difference, and feminist porn is no better than any other kind of porn.