The Anti-Pornography Feminist Movement Essay

The Anti-Pornography Feminist Movement Essay

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“I don’t need statistics to tell me that there is a relationship between pornography
and real violence. My body remembers.” This chilling testimony from a female rape
victim to a grand jury in 1983 represents the evils that pornography represents in the
United States. There are strong correlations between sex crimes and pornography that
have divided feminists over whether free speech is worth the sheer magnitude of
sex-crime victims. Free speech is protected by the First Amendment and most people
have differing views on its meaning. One thing that cannot be ignored is the fact that
90% of sexual offenders have used pornography “frequently.” I believe that the
anti-pornography movement is not only just, but essential. I would like to explore
various aspects of the anti-pornography movement including the history, players, rhetoric
and the impact. I believe that shedding light on the ways that pornography effects human
beings, we will feel differently about the “freedom of speech.”
In the 1960’s and 1970’s, debates over pornography mirrored the
counter-culture’s battle with conservative values. The 1969 case Stanley v. Georgia,
“community standards” were challenged and the court upheld the civil rights for
consumers to possess pornography in their homes. However, the 1970’s brought about
the VCR and feminists began to redefine pornography to explore the impact of the porn
industry on women and their place in society. Though many feminists were frightened by
the prospect that they may be working hand in hand with conservatives to regulate this
practice, many women jumped to action when new surveys and statistics were revealed
about pornography and women. To most of these women, the immorality was not ...

... middle of paper ...

MacKinnon, Catharine. (1987). Feminism Unmodified: Discourses on Life and Law.
Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Malamuth, Neil. (1981a). Rape fantasies as a function of exposure to violent sexual
stimuli. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 10, 33-47.
Radford, Jill; Russell, Diana (Eds.). (1992). Femicide: The Politics of Woman Killing.
New York: Twayne Publishers.
Russell, Diana. (1975). The Politics of Rape. New York: Stein and Day.
Russell, Diana. (1980). Pornography and violence: What does the new research say? In
Laura Lederer (Ed.), Take Back the Night: Women on Pornography (pp. 218-238).
New York: William Morrow.
Zillmann, Dolf, and Bryant, Jennings. (1984). Effects of massive exposure to
pornography. In Neil Malamuth and Edward Donnerstein (Eds.), Pornography
and Sexual Aggression, (pp. 115-138). New York: Academic Press.

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