'They're ordinary people, not aliens from the planet sex!': The mundane excitements of pornography for women

Clarissa Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Like art of the avant-garde, particular instances of pornography are claimed to do more than simply arouse: by offending bourgeois sensibilities they explode normative conceptions of sexuality. The focus on transgression tends to dismiss the thrills of 'ordinary' porn as inferior and in particular, for this paper, fails to address the experience of reading porn in the UK where legally available materials are characterized by their supposed uniformity and repetition. The attempt to distinguish between forms of pornography in terms of their ability to transgress social and sexual norms continues the obfuscation of actual use of sexually explicit materials. This paper deals with one woman's relationship with the UK soft-core magazine For Women, illustrating the necessity to recognize the ways in which access to and use of this particular instance of 'pornography for women' is governed by the magazine's construction of a form of 'ordinary' girlie-dom within its pages and by its appeal to women's sexual experience as excitingly routine.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Mundane Behavior
Volume3
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2002
Externally publishedYes

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