Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Porn Problems

It seems that most often, porn is associated with male viewers and male sexual interests. Dialogue surrounding porn and its possible psychological effects tends focuses on males and their probable unrealistic expectations of sexual encounters.


However, this article takes a different standpoint, highlighting the very real ways in which porn can mislead female viewers as well. Women were asked what porn had "taught" about sex, and they paint a very unrealistic picture. One of the misleading ideas is that orgasms are effortless. A woman is quoted, "I thought orgasms were much easier to achieve than they actually are. As a result I thought something was wrong with me for a long time. I just assumed that PIV= almost instant orgasm. I was so disappointed to find that wasn't the case".

We hear a lot of talk about porn displaying unrealistic female bodies and female genitalia, essentially vaginas are expected to look like a prepubescent girl in every scene. However, female porn viewers can also be mislead about male genitalia, expecting all to be circumcised and much larger than average.  "I didn't know uncircumcised penises existed, because all the porn I'd seen prior had circumcised male performers".

One of the more damaging by-products of porn viewing is that you have to do everything women in porn videos do in order for your partner to enjoy themself: " It didn't occur to me until like age 27 that I didn't have to let a guy come on my face if I didn't want to. Or I didn't have to swallow. Or that it was okay to not moan if I didn't feel like moaning." I think that no matter how confident a person is during sex and in deciding what they are comfortable with doing, porn can be have a greater effect on how we perform during a sexual experience than we might think.

It is strange to think of a time when we wouldn't have to worry about porn influencing the ways in which we think about sex and about what we should and should not be done during sex. I am wondering if we are moving to a place where it is difficult to have completely unbiased sex because more often than not, at least one person in a sexual encounter watches pornographic videos. It would seem to be very hard to not compare your body, genitalia, and sexual experiences with porn once you have viewed it, and especially if you view it regularly. Can people still watch porn regularly and have it not interfere with their sexual experiences? Do you think that those who watch porn are subconsciously trying to live up to some pornographic standard? Besides expectations for orgasm and how genitals should look etc., can porn influence the ability to be aroused by sex without the intense visual stimuli? Do you think there could be a "safe viewing amount" in regards to the previous question, where it wouldn't "hurt" your sexual arousal with another person?

Thursday, May 15, 2014



Trojan is a relatively new song by Seattle-based hip hop artist Sol, a thought-proving melody about safe sex and condom use. He uses the Trojan brand of condom to discuss the reasons why he believes it's important to correctly use condoms, referencing one night stands: "She let me inside and she don't even know my name," and the value of properly assessing the effectively of the condom: "So careful, I've never let the condom rip and don't plan to." The chorus repeats, "That Trojan, I pack that sh** when I'm getting down, that Trojan, my best friend when I sleep around." He signs off at the end of the song, "Safe sex."

What do you think of the song? Does singing about condom use surprise you? Can you think of other blatant pro-condom references in media? Do we often see/ notice/ become aware of condom use in the songs we listen to/ movies we watch/ news we read? Could you see this song being effectively used as a pro-safe-sex tool? Do you have any concerns? 

Condom Ad

This condom ad, released only 3 days ago, depicts an assortment of couples in a plethora of sexual acts, highlighted by Edith Piaf's "Je ne regrette rien"-- I don't regret anything. This is the theme of the ad, which, after a presentation of the sexual acts, concludes with a simple picture of a condom. In the "Behind the Scenes," the directors speak (in French and German) about the pleasure gained from using condoms--rather, considering that protecting oneself is pleasurable.

What are your thoughts about the assortment of couples in the clip? Do you think this is representative? What messages did you initially get from the directors? Do you think this is provocative and effective advertising? In what ways? 

---What do these two ads make you think about? Are you impressed/ uninterested/ engaged? Thoughts?