The Porning of America: The Rise of Porn Culture, What It Means, and Where We Go from Here

The Porning of America: The Rise of Porn Culture, What It Means, and Where We Go from Here

Carmine Sarracino

Language: English

Pages: 272

ISBN: 0807061530

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


From the popular Bratz dolls to the infamous photos from Abu Ghraib, The Porning of America reveals that porn has become the mainstream-and the mainstream has become porn. Carmine Sarracino and Kevin Scott argue that porn has seeped into and been absorbed by every defining aspect of our culture: language, entertainment, fashion, advertising, sexual behavior, even politics. Cultural absorption is so complete that we no longer have to purchase pornography to get porn because we increasingly live porn on a daily basis.

In tracing porn's transformation-from the Civil War to the golden age of comic books in the 1940s and 1950s to the adult film industry's golden decade of the 1970s and up to today-the authors illustrate that what began in the dark alleys of American life has now emerged as an unapologetic multibillion-dollar industry. In this astonishingly comprehensive book, Sarracino and Scott profile such "porn exemplars"-those who have been pivotal to the mainstreaming of porn-as Russ Meyer, Snoop Dogg, Jenna Jameson, and Paris Hilton; they document how mainstream advertising uses porn culture to sell commercial goods now to an even younger, "tween" audience; and they pose crucial questions: How has porn shaped the way we view our own and others' bodies? Sarracino and Scott examine porned advertising of everything from Clinique to Orbit gum to Old Spice. How has porn influenced our relationships and how do current sexual behaviors, such as the "hookup," mimic porn? The authors look to MySpace and Craigslist for answers. And how does porn shape our identity, as individuals and as a nation? Sarracino and Scott argue that the mistreatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib exposed our porned sensibilities.

Not an anti-porn diatribe, The Porning of America is resolutely pro-sex. Sarracino and Scott contend that, to make the most of our hard-won sexual freedom, we must thoughtfully-and honestly-evaluate what might be liberating about porn as well as what might be damaging. Nuanced, timely, and urgent, The Porning of America will change how you see the world around you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

fictionally and in fact). Just as Deep Throat opened a door for other porn movies to crowd through, so Pretty Baby opened a farther door for the unabashed portrayal of children as sex objects, frequently partnered with adults. Blame It on Rio, for example, another star-studded movie (Michael Caine, Valerie Harper, Demi Moore), dealt with two older men, best friends, who vacation in Rio with their teenage daughters. One of them, Matthew (played by Michael Caine) winds up in a sexual relationship

shaving and asks for a kiss. matthew: Kiss you? I’ll spank you! jennifer: Ooooooo, please! And bite me too! In 1980 Brooke Shields moved oƒscreen to star in ads for Calvin Klein jeans. The most famous of these showed Shields slightly bent over (presumably having just pulled on a pair of jeans) beginning to button her enticingly open blouse, with the tag line: “Nothing comes between me and my Calvins.” She was now fifteen years old and a familiar sex symbol in America and overseas as well. A

firm and uncommon use. Most female porn performers find themselves inexorably drawn along the traditional career arc for a porn star—which moves roughly from girl/girl scenes, to girl/boy, to anal sex, to “double penetration,” to interracial, and, finally, to the dark zones. Jameson, however, stopped her progress in the arc at girl/boy interactions, and while online forums are full of complaints about her lack of adventurousness, Jameson’s popularity has grown without falter. Indeed, at the same

That simple formulation became a slogan of the feminist anti-pornography movement, and appeared regularly on placards in the hands of women protesting in front of peep shows and porn shops. Further, an assumption that pornography depended upon violence against its female performers, which in turn led to violence against women in general, became the core belief of the movement. The heat and scope of the protests startled the liberal establishment, traditionally committed to free speech and its

not: This is me! This is who I am—or who I want to be! Interviews with luminaries (McLuhan himself was featured in March 1969) added the element of intellectual attainment to material acquisition. Were the Playboy playmates actually “like” the readers of the magazine? Were they the girl next door? Only if the girl next door happened to be an anatomically perfect aspiring or established model or actress who mingled with celebrities in a certain Chicago mansion. The playmates were, in their own

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