Ignorance is bliss

One of the first points we brought up in class on Monday was that pornography distribution has a solid history. There are accounts going back centuries of pornographic images and ideas. Nevertheless, it is still something many people are uncomfortable discussing because of the negative stigma associated with it.

What I find interesting is that even with the increasing acceptances of small pornographic images in Hollywood films, we still choose to avoid discussing what effects that has on our society. Mediums have always been re-appropriated to cater human sexual desire. With the prevalence of the Internet, it is inevitable that this would become the next medium for hosting pornographic images. The Internet allows things to be anonymous, free, private, and immediate. The Internet allows allows greater access to information. All of this aids the appeal of involving themselves in porn.

Despite all of this, social science have yet to discuss the topic that has been filtering into our mainstream media one image at a time. In the essay “Positioning Pornography in the Digital Economy,” the authors discuss how one needs to remove their moral judgement before diving into a topic such as this. Scholarly discussion of pornography has even been marginalized in word choices and categorization. Even popular media has made a movement towards not ignoring this part of our society.

After the liberation movement, it became okay to discuss your sexuality and humans were more open to being sexual beings. But since then, it is almost as if we have reverted back to being hush-hush about the topic, especially since pornography is available to a wider audience through the Internet.

I guess society is waiting for the “okay” to come from somewhere in terms of this topic before we can pursue it in an academic sense. Will there ever be a time when humans will be more open to discussing sex and sexuality or will the topic always remain behind closed doors?

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1 Comment

  1. I think chinyeamanda’s raised a very interesting point. Have we moved backwards in terms of sexual discussion? Sci-fi writer Neal Stephenson, in his book The Diamond Age: Or, A Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer explores the notion that society shouldn’t be viewed in terms of progression (we get more and more accepting of everything as time moves on) but in cycles–a very permissive age is generally followed by a very restrictive age. Have we moved back towards restriction? Or is there a case to be made that our digital stuff (such as the availability of internet pornography) has moved us into a new paradigm entirely?
    –MH


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