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Pornography and sexual violence against woman

(26 Posts)
FlorenceDay Sun 21-Aug-11 20:29:02

I know I'm not going to tell you something you haven't heard before but had a fascinating conversation with my db today.

He is a forensic psychologist and works with sex offenders. He was telling me that WITHOUT EXCEPTION every offender he has worked with had a huge porn habit and that they all demonstrated a real distorted attitude towards sex and woman. Their ideas of what was a normal and healthy sexual relationship was seriously skewed.

I know it's something that we all know any way but actually hearing it from a person who works with sex offenders made my blood run cold. Why is this allowed to happen!?

UsingMainlySpoons Sun 21-Aug-11 22:08:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CRIKRI Sun 21-Aug-11 22:36:08

Spoons, the same argument is used to endorse prostitution - that if men can pay for sex, they won't "need" to force other women to have sex.

In both cases, it's absolute hogwash.

There is evidence that consumption of porn can serve to "normalise" sexual objectification and exploitation of women and desensitise them to the abuse depicted. There is also evidence that the messages portrayed in porn are influencing children and young people's expectations of what "normal" sexual relationships are "supposed" to be like (i.e. power, control, abuse and degradation of women/girls for the pleasure of men/boys.)

Have you seen this film? Pleasure vs Profit?

AnyFucker Sun 21-Aug-11 22:42:21

yup

MrsReasonable Mon 22-Aug-11 16:50:33

Um, well, yeah. They're sex offenders, of course they have a distorted attitude towards sex and women. Who says that it's caused by porn, though?

ThePosieParker Mon 22-Aug-11 19:22:07

They're desensitised to women being humans that they can't control.

aliceliddell Mon 22-Aug-11 19:29:53

Does it have to be caused from a standing start as it were? How about validating an already existing tendency? You might think necrophilia a bit weird until you see films which let you know at least one other person (the film maker) has the same fantasy as you. So it's normalised.

LRDTheFeministDragon Mon 22-Aug-11 19:36:58

I agree alice.

I think as well, porn gives a very odd sense of what women enjoy. And logically, if you watch a lot of porn, you will soon have seen far, far more sexual encounters than you'll have had personally - so the majority of your experience will give you a skewed idea of what women do when they are enjoying sex.

HeifferunderConstruction Mon 22-Aug-11 20:01:43

its well known that pornography used often desensitises people as does watching alot of any kind of graphic imagery, I've watched my fair share of porn/ horror films and it really does I RL i'm a wuss but on a screen I dont flinch I darent thing how often these people must to become ..that desensitised.

reading stuff on here has made me pretty much stop I've seen some questionable stuff very never questioned it at the time but now I think I actually sat through that, the 'their choice' is a big thing where people use it to switch off IYSWIM.

ScarlettIsWalking Mon 22-Aug-11 20:06:55

It doesn't surprise me at at all that sexual offenders/murderers use pornography. It must fuel the fantasy and desire...Women are just blank eyed bodies that don't feel pain.

HeifferunderConstruction Mon 22-Aug-11 20:08:59

I think its also the type
these people seek out.
I bet its not just 2 people at it on a bed

BonnieLassie Tue 23-Aug-11 12:40:54

It's a symptom, not a cause. The vast majority of men who watch porn are not sex offenders.

HeifferunderConstruction Tue 23-Aug-11 16:39:12

thats true I think its echoes the Idea the video games create monsters , it doesnt. But I do think it exxagerates bad characteristics due to te desentisiation.

AliceWyrld Tue 23-Aug-11 19:00:27

The idea that what people watch wouldn't influence how people behave always makes me confused

How on earth do people's minds work then? So we're born, but we don't absorb any social cues around us, yet we all develop into people with shared understandings? Or is the idea that it all stops when we get to 18. So then we're fully formed, and our minds remain static and unable to be influenced? So how does that work? How does society work if it's not through communication? Or is porn meant to be the exception to all of this? It just makes no sense.

SinicalSal Tue 23-Aug-11 21:30:45

Totally agree Alice.

I have read somewhere that the ideal human group numbers about 150, everyone knows everyone else, the village/tribe is cohesive, and everyone has a personal relationship to some degree with everyone else. Above this number groups tend to splinter off. In a world where we 'know' the people on EE more than we know Mrs Next Door, wouldn't it be natural that subconsciously we take our social cues from them? And the more media you absorb - of whatever type - the more we align ourselves within that group. When I first heard of the ideal group thing it made total sense to me in the sense of explaining the dynamics of normalisation. Sadly I can't remember where I heard it so can't entirely vouch for it's accuracy.

ThePosieParker Tue 23-Aug-11 21:35:53

I read a Paul Britton book about the journey of a serial killer, which seem to have sexual motive even if the killing is not obviously sexual, and it starts small but is usually a disengaged person.

vesuvia Tue 23-Aug-11 21:36:55

SinicalSal wrote - "I have read somewhere that the ideal human group numbers about 150".

I think you are referring to Dunbar's number.

SinicalSal Tue 23-Aug-11 21:45:34

Thank you Vesuvia, that is indeed what I was referring to.

<scans link> yes, I'm even righter than I thought grin

AliceWyrld Tue 23-Aug-11 21:57:13

Posie, I see sexual as having been so linked to violence that that sounds true. It's like people talk about rape as being sexual, as if it's just an extension of sex, when its about power and violence. Porn isn't sex, it's violence, but yet people often just describe it as 'people having sex'. It's like they've become the same thing in people's minds, so with such a wider conception of sex, it's no wonder it's linked to other violent acts. Does that make any sense or am I rambling?

ThePosieParker Tue 23-Aug-11 22:00:44

I wonder if the urge to commit violence is a sexual urge unless in self defence? The drive to kill/hurt for enjoyment or control is ultimately sexual. The expression even of male porn faces and a killer (from the images I've seen) are similar.

No, you weren't rambling.

ThePosieParker Tue 23-Aug-11 22:01:17

But I could be high on VOCs after glossing the house for TWO days!!

AliceWyrld Tue 23-Aug-11 22:05:18

I think it is culturally driven. But then I think that about everything. I don't think there is any 'essence' to what is sexual, it is purely what we define as sexual at a point in time, if that makes sense. So the two have become connected now, but I don't think they inevitably are.

I am unhigh from excessive dust consumption from clearing for decorating. I'm sure I'll meet you on the gloss high in a few days grin

VictorGollancz Tue 23-Aug-11 22:34:20

AliceWyrld, is it possible that our ability to adapt stagnates as we get older? So something we see as children has a bigger impact than if we were adult? (and I've just realised I didn't reply to you on the penetration/power and control thread. I thought I had - just wanted to high five and agree really!)

I'm not sure, though, if porn creates sex offenders (as in, if someone watches enough of it then they will inevitably offend). Does that matter though, when it permeates the world with distorted images of women as things? It's going to attract a pretty self-selecting bunch in which men who view women as nothing - and are prepared to commit criminal acts in line with that view - make up a significant percentage.

I post in some very male-centric forums - even if we artificially presume that the vast, vast majority of posters are NOT sex offenders, the language of women as property, as object, as THING, is everywhere. Decent men - perhaps even men who might vaguely think of themselves as pro-feminist - provide camouflage for violent, dangerous men by speaking about women in terms that are totally normalised in contemporary society. I wish they'd realise it.

AliceWyrld Tue 23-Aug-11 22:45:23

Dunno, although would imagine so. I think things that happen when I am young have shaped who I am now. And there's that whole nostalgia thing that makes you think things longer ago were better that maybe adds to it? Dunno.

Re the porn creating sex offenders, nah I don't think it's inevitable on an individual basis. It's a way more complex thing. Like you make reference to, it creates a culture where some things are normalised, and made more easy to justify. And yes where things don't get challenged. We get masses of cues for how to act in a social group, but they have to feel like they fit together. We have to make sense of them in our own minds. I've read research about men who watch porn seeing women as less human. And they use it in war to dehumanise the people that are being fought against. But it has to operate as part of a wider culture where that way of viewing women 'makes sense'.

SinicalSal Wed 24-Aug-11 11:05:17

Fairly relevant no shit Sherlock moment here.

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