Monday, February 9, 2009

Quotables: The Science of Pornography Volume 2

The Science of Pornography Vol 2: an illustrated study without equal for scope, impact and significance.

"It is obvious that there are no hard and fast lines to classification and identification of pornography. One to fifty specifics can occur in any given bit of erotica: we see no point in trying to emulate the intelligentsia who spend lifetimes trying to separate man's mental, mechanical and emotional responses into properly labeled containers. Pornography is for fun, no matter how it is looked on by the rednecks and bluenoses."

I periodically get pulled into semantic arguments. Normally because someone is protesting that what they write, or more intrusively that what I write, is not pornography. This is usually on the basis that it is something else.

It has a plot.

There is romance.

The characters develop.

It is literature.

Sex is included only as strictly necessary to the plot.

As if a depiction of sexual pleasure is somehow banished, elevated or redeemed by the presence of any "worthy" feature. But the question is, what needs to be redeemed or excused? In what world are the categories of aesthetics, intellect and arousal so clear demarcated and sex still banished to shameful sinfulness?

In the end Mr. Scott does not quite manage to practice what he preaches. The very author that makes these remarks in this volume from the 1970's shrouds his words in pseudo-science. Because a book about pornography of written by an enthusiast would be gratuitous and banal. It must be disguised, redeemed, excused... by a shallow veneer of faux clinical detachment and academic discourse.

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