The Pornography Industry: What Everyone Needs to Know®

ISBN : 9780190205126

Shira Tarrant
216 ページ
147 x 246 mm
What Everyone Needs to Know



  • Provides historical information, statistical data, and first-person perspectives
  • Presents controversial topics in an unbiased manner
  • Provides reliable data about a contentious subject
  • Summarizes the political debates in the ongoing feminist porn wars
  • Sorts through myths and misinformation to provide a reliable resource about the pornography industry

We may know pornography when we see it, but the business of pornography is a surprisingly elusive subject. Reliable figures about the industry are difficult to come by and widely disputed, but one matter that is hardly debatable is that pornography is a major and ubiquitous enterprise. Porn allegedly accounts for one-third of all internet traffic currently, though the data about actual consumption is unclear. Reports in recent years have suggested that 70 million individuals visit porn sites every week; that among viewers aged 18-24, women watch more porn than men; and that among middle-aged, white-collar workers, three-quarters of men and half of women have admitted to looking at pornography websites while at work. 
While debates and emotions around porn can run high, there is a crucial need for reliable information and rational conversation. In this book, Shira Tarrant parses the wide range of statistics that we have on the pornography industry, sorting myth from reality in an objective, fascinating and knowledgeable fashion. She looks at ongoing political controversies around the industry, the feminist porn wars, the views of the religious right, the history of pornography, landmark legal cases, and the latest in medical research. The Pornography Industry also explains the industry basics -who works in porn, why people become performers, how much they earn, and what happens on a porn set. It further delves into important questions such as: how many teenagers watch porn and should we worry about it? What is porn piracy and can it be stopped? What can the industry do about sexist and racist pornography? Does porn cause violence against women? Can people become addicted to porn? Is watching porn the same as infidelity? By presenting competing perspectives in an even-handed way, The Pornography Industry will enable readers to explore these provocative issues and make their own best decisions about the debates.



1. Overview 
What is the definition of pornography?
What is the difference between erotica and porn?
Why does pornography matter?
Is pornography a crime, a sin, a vice, or a choice?
If pornography is a private issue, why talk about it in public?
What makes pornography a valence issue?

2. Historical Questions
When did pornography begin?
How has pornography changed over time?
How has technology impacted pornography?
How did porn evolve in the twentieth-century?
What are stag films?
What is the golden era of porn?
What is the video era of porn?
What is the digital era of porn?
What is some of the most famous (or infamous) porn in history?

3. The Pornography Industry 
What is the difference between mainstream and indie porn?
What is the difference between features, gonzo, and unscripted porn?
What are some of the leading industry organizations and publications?
Where is most pornography made?
What does an average contract look like?
What kind of records need to be kept?
What happens on a porn shoot?
How much does it cost to produce porn?
How much revenue does pornography generate … and how accurate are these figures?
Stolen porn: What is Internet piracy?
What efforts are being made to address porn piracy?
What are the awards given for porn?

4. Porn Performers
How much are porn performers paid?
How do rates vary?
What is the pay for magazine shoots and adult-themed products?
What are cam sites and how much do performers earn?
What is it like to work in porn?
Do porn performers enjoy having sex for the camera?
Why do people become porn performers?
What is the "damaged goods " hypothesis?
Is this hypothesis true?
What are some concerns about porn performers' well-being?
How do performers transition out of the adult industry?

5. Who's Watching Porn?
Is it true that men are more visually aroused than women?
What are the demographics on porn use?
How does age make a difference?
How many people watch porn while they're at work?
What is the data on men and women watching porn?
What is the data on couples watching porn together?
How does porn use correlate to religious and political views?
What is the data on global porn use?
How is this demographic information collected?
What are the challenges in data collection?
How might stigma and stereotypes about gender impact the data on who uses porn?

6. Pleasure and Danger in Pornography
Does pornography cause violence against women?
What are the debates and the data?
Does pornography cause sexism and racism?
Are there links between pornography and human sex trafficking?
Does pornography mean that we are what we watch?
What is the impact of pornography on marriage and relationships?
Does pornography have positive benefits?

7. Legal Issues
Why does the First Amendment protect pornography as free speech?
What makes pornography different from obscenity?
What are some of the important legal cases regarding pornography in the U.S.?
What is Measure B?
What are some of the global pornography laws?

8. Medical Issues
Are porn performers at risk of contracting STIs or HIV?
What are the STI testing requirements for porn performers?
What are some changes in STI testing and health safety protocol?
What happens if a test is positive?
Are there other health concerns related to the adult film industry?
What is labiaplasty?
Is there a problem with anal sex?
Is waxing dangerous?
What are the debates about pornography addiction?
Are there links between pornography use and erectile dysfunction?

9. Children and Teens Using Pornography
How many youth are watching porn? And how old are they when they start?
What are key concerns about the effects on teens watching porn?
Is sexting a form of pornography?
What are parental controls-and are they effective?
What is porn literacy-and how can it help?

10. The Future of Porn
Will pornography become fair trade?
Will feminist porn become more popular?
Will more porn be made for women?
What is queer porn?
Will pornography be taught in college?
How might technology change pornography?
What about porn in space?
Will people ever stop fighting about porn?
Suggested Readings


Shira Tarrant, Associate Professor, Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Department, California State University, Long Beach

"The debate about porn is a minefield, a thick entanglement of moral, religious, political, feminist and libertarian concerns. As with a skein of wool, as each side pulls tighter on its strand, the knot gets tighter, positions ossify, and no one listens. The always insightful writer Shira Tarrant bravely steps into the debate with a calm, thorough discussion of every aspect of the porn industry. With a careful and assured grasp on the material, Tarrant guides the reader, shaking the skein gently, letting knots untangle and individual strands become clearer. The best primer on porn one can find." --Michael Kimmel, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Stony Brook University, and author of Angry White Men

"The Pornography Industry offers an incredibly comprehensive examination of pornography - covering legal issues, political debates, performers, consumers, the porn industry, technological changes, and much more. Unlike some other books on pornography, Tarrant's analysis of these issues is consistently evidence-based, and the evidence presented challenges many of the conventional myths regarding the content of pornography and its effects on those who produce and consume it." --Ronald Weitzer, George Washington University, and author of Legalizing Prostitution: From Illicit Vice to Lawful Business

"Pornography is a controversial topic that many people like to argue about-and even more people like to watch. Shira Tarrant has written an even-handed account of the legal, political, and social issues at stake. This important book provides an accessible overview of key concerns that face parents, educators, the curious, and the concerned." --Nadine Strossen, author of Defending Pornography: Free Speech, Sex, and the Fight for Women's Rights

"Shira Tarrant has provided a wide-ranging, accessibly written primer on the modern pornography industry, answering questions many people want to know but are afraid-or don't know whom-to ask. She demystifies the business and humanizes the workers in it. Above all, Tarrant advocates for greater education about this rapidly changing industry, guiding readers in understanding its potential harms and benefits." --Carisa R. Showden, author of Choices Women Make: Agency in Domestic Violence, Assisted Reproduction, and Sex Work

"A non-judgemental look at the the porn industry, author Tarrant covers pretty much all the topics, the history and societies viewpoint, as you would probably expect ... I think this book will be most appreciated by readers who are looking for a sterile, historical look at the industry." --Jeff Linamen