In this class, we have discussed at length the ways in which sex is often viewed as a commodity. It is advertised and sold in a variety of ways across the globe, and its meanings are different as interpreted by different groups of people. One way that we can analyze the forms that sex is sold in is by looking more closely at the industries that operate around sexualizing human beings. One of the main industries that does this is the porn industry. Chris Pappas writes an article, “Sex Sells, But What Else Does It Do?: The American Porn Industry” that informs us of the ways in which porn is representative of a whole host of characteristics and interpretations of sex.
It is clear that 50 Shades of Grey and Twilight are trying to be romance novels but instead it gives a view of gender roles that depict women as helpless and in need of men’s guidance.
Before enrolling in Sex and Society, I had always wanted to read 50 Shades of Grey but was too embarrassed to buy the book or be seen reading it. I thought the book came with a particular stigma, one that alluded someone being overtly sexually active and I was afraid that I would be labeled in that way (this seems to be the opinions of others as well). However, I found that I enjoyed this book for a couple of reasons. First, it took me back to the days of reading the Twilight series. Both books were light-hearted, fun, and entertaining, but they both created this different idea of love. Something that was forbidden and desired all at the same time. Bella and Anastasia (the main characters of both books) had lovers that were not your “typical” boyfriends. One was a vampire and the other was obsessed with BDSM. But, why is this so desirable for women to have? OR why is this so desirable to read? Without 50 Shades of Grey, I would not have known about the BDSM culture the way that I do now, or been able to explore how it comes into play with other factors in the media.
Pornography makes the world go round. Wait, no, that’s pizza. Either way, pornography is a big part of American culture and our economy.
This is mine,” he whispers aggressively. “All mine. Do you understand?” He eases his finger in and out as he gazes down at me, gauging my reaction, his eyes burning.
Abruptly, he moves, doing several things at once: Withdrawing his fingers, leaving me wanting, unzipping his fly, and pushing me down onto the couch so he’s lying on top of me.
“Hands on your head,” he commands through gritted teeth as he kneels up, forcing my legs wider…
“We don’t have long. This will be quick, and it’s for me, not you. Do you understand?
Don’t come, or I will spank you,” he says through clenched teeth.”