|[MASTER INDEX] [DATE INDEX] [THREAD INDEX] [SUBJECT INDEX] [AUTHOR INDEX]|
|[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next]|
Jan 25, 1995 04:11 PM
by K. Paul Johnson
Keith, I don't think it is wise to buy in to the equation of pornography with violence, which plays into the hands of the feminist-fundamentalist censors. Yes, our popular culture is saturated with both sex and violence. TV and movies do make the disastrous eroticization of violence that has been shown to have negative consequences. But while there is abundant evidence of the harmful effects of exposure to violence in media, there is no such evidence regarding pornography per se. And even before the porn industry began self-censorship regarding violence, as a medium it was dramatically less violent than regular TV and movies. Now there is absolutely no violence in the mainstream porn industry's product. As for degradation of the viewer from a spiritual p.o.v., I think Natural Born Killers or Pulp Fiction do exactly that while pretending to educate and amuse via satire. In current esthetic discourse, "good" art vs. "bad" is defined only in terms of formal considerations. It'll be a long time before a moral dimension is much acknowledged. I was, however, pleased to hear Pauline Kael say that NBK was a loathsome film because Stone wallows and exults in violence while pretending to distance himself from it.