Porn Studies

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Duke University Press, 2004 - BUSINESS & ECONOMICS - 516 pages
15 Reviews
In Hard Core: Power, Pleasure, and the "Frenzy of the Visible", Linda Williams put moving-image pornography on the map of contemporary scholarship with her path-breaking analysis of the most popular and enduring of all film and video genres. Now, fifteen years later, she showcases the next generation of critical thinking about pornography and signals new directions for study and teaching. Porn Studies resists the tendency to situate pornography as the outer limit of what can be studied and discussed. It moves beyond futile feminist debates and distinctions between a "good" erotica and a "bad" hard core. With revenues totaling between ten and fourteen billion dollars annually--more than the combined revenues of professional American football, basketball, and baseball--this volume acknowledges that visual, hard-core pornography has emphatically arrived as a central feature of American popular culture. It is time, Williams contends, for scholars to recognize this and give pornography a serious and extended analysis. The essays in Porn Studies exemplify this effort. Contributors examine varieties of pornography from the tradition of the soft-core pin-up through the contemporary hard-core tradition of straight, gay, and lesbian videos and dvds to the burgeoning phenomenon of pornography on the internet. They explore, as examples of the genre, individual works as divergent as The Starr Report, the pirated Tommy Lee/Pamela Anderson honeymoon video and explicit Japanese "ladies comics" consumed by women. They also probe difficult issues such as the sexualization of race and class and the relationship of pornography to the avant-garde. To take pornography seriously as an object of analysis also means teaching it. Porn Studies thus includes a useful annotated bibliography of readings and archival sources important to the study of pornography as a cultural form. Contributors: Heather Butler; Rich Cante; Jake Gerli; Minette Hillyer; Nguyen Tan Hoang; Despina Kakoudaki; Franklin Melendez; Ara Osterweil; Zabet Patterson; Constance Penley; Angelo Restivo; Eric Schaefer; Michael Sicinski; Deborah Shamoon; Maria St. John; Tom Waugh; Linda Williams

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Review: Porn Studies

User Review  - June Junebug - Goodreads

This is a very detailed analysis of porn as it stands today, including some porn from other countries like Japan. While the content of the subject matter is very good, it doesn't make up for the ... Read full review

Review: Porn Studies

User Review  - Goodreads

This is a very detailed analysis of porn as it stands today, including some porn from other countries like Japan. While the content of the subject matter is very good, it doesn't make up for the ... Read full review


Proliferating Pornographies OnScene An Introduction
Contemporary Pornographies
Pornography Performance and the Presidents Penis
Porn Home Movies and the Live Action Performance of Love in Pam and Tommy Lee Hardcore and Uncensored
The Pleasures of Japanese Pornographic Comics for Women
Consuming Pornography in the Digital Era
Gay Lesbian and Homosocial Pornographies
OffScreen OnScreen
The White Trashing of Porn
Soft Core Hard Core and the Pornographic Sublime
The American Secret Weapon in World War II
16 mm Film and the Rise of the Pornographic Feature
Video Pornography Visual Pleasure and the Return of the Sublime
Pornography andas AvantGarde
Toward the Recognition of a Pornographic Avantgarde
Scott Starks NOEMA

The CulturalAesthetic Specificities of Allmale MovingImage Pornography
What Do You Call a Lesbian with Long Fingers? The Development of Lesbian and Dyke Pornography
Chuck Vincents Straight Pornography
Pornography Race and Class
The Making of a Gay Asian American Porn Star
Pornography Exploitation and Interracial Lust
An Annotated Bibliography
A Select List of Archives and Commercial Sites
List of Contributors

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About the author (2004)

Linda Williams is Professor of Film Studies and Rhetoric and Director of the Program in Film Studies and of the Center for New Media at the University of California, Berkeley. Her books include Playing the Race Card: Melodramas of Black and White from Uncle Tom to O. J. Simpson; Hard Core: Power, Pleasure, and the “Frenzy of the Visible”; and Viewing Positions: Ways of Seeing Film.

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