Are critics of rape porn guilty of kinkshaming?

With his all-American good looks and clean-cut image, Adult film star James Deen has been hailed as the “boy next door” of porn, but in the in the wake of rape allegations, people are now questioning the rape fantasy content in his films. In an article for The Daily Beast, former adult film star Aurora Snow, talks about how the definition of rape can become “muddled” in an industry where violent sex is the norm.  “When your job regularly consists of roughing a woman up, ignoring her pleas, and choking her out, do you start to bring some of that behavior home with you?” she asks.

But does violent porn actually encourage rape culture or are critics of the rape fantasy genre guilty of kinkshaming?

While it’s unlikely that watching simulated violence in porn will make an otherwise harmless viewer snap and become a rapist, that doesn’t mean it isn’t problematic. Of course, admit this openly is to many an admission that you’re a pearl-clutching prude. I get it, pondering the social implications of your sexual fantasies is a major buzzkill. LIKE. MAJOR!

What’s more, many of the concerns anti-kinkshamers have are valid. A lot of nonviolent men and women enjoy violent porn and engage in consensual and safe, rape fantasy role-playing. What’s more, because women have historically been made to feel deviant for having sexual appetites that are considered normal for men, the last thing women with rough kink-fantasies need is shaming.

But it’s woefully naïve to believe misogyny in fantasy, is neatly and completely separate from misogyny in reality. In an article called “The Kink Question” on Not Sorry Feminism, Lindsey Weedston sort of waves the flag for “kink-critical” feminists. “Everyone has internalized harmful shit from our culture. You can’t escape it, not with the media saturation that we have going on. That’s how the human mind works,” Weedston explains. Her solution is self-examination which she calls “the best and most basic ally work you can do.”

I agree.

Exploring the roots of your desire might be a turnoff but sometimes it’s important. If you enjoy watching women be abused, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have some horrific incident from your childhood that you need to work out — I won’t even pretend to be a psychologist — but you have to at least wonder why you find this titillating. Fans of violent porn say it’s harmless because it’s just fantasy, but the real fantasy is believing you can love rape porn and also be a feminist.

 

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One thought on “Are critics of rape porn guilty of kinkshaming?”

  1. Oh boy! That’s some words of intelligent right there.

    I agree with you. A person who is into the such content (and I’d extend it to anyone who also enjoys aesthecized violence in genera. EXample: Myself) needs to be critical of the content s/he watches. Such people need to actively remember that this is fantasy, and it must remain this way.

    These porno films shouldn’t be banned. There are people who are into rough sex. We just need to always actively fight against these fantasies so they won’t become reality. We can enact them but we must never ever actually perform them for real.

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