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The Porn Book Paperback – 15 Feb 2008


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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Melbourne University Press (15 Feb 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0522853404
  • ISBN-13: 978-0522853407
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,886,365 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

Catharine Lumby is the editor of "Remote Control" and the head of the media studies program at the University of Sydney, Australia. She is the coauthor of "Why TV is Good for Kids" and is the author of "Bad Girls: The Media, Sex and Feminism in the 1990s "and "Gotcha: Life in a Tabloid World." Katherine Albury is the author of "Yes Means Yes: Getting Explicit about Heterosex." She teaches media studies at the University of Sydney, Australia. Alan McKee is the author of "Australian Television," "The Public Sphere," and "Textual Analysis." He teaches in television at Queensland University of Technology.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4 reviews
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Dispassionate, Well-Argued and Refreshing 7 Jun 2008
By Ploughstar* - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
A subject as important as the pervasive influence of pornography in our culture deserves serious consideration. This book takes a rational and empirical approach to many rarely-questioned assumptions about pornography, often with surprising and challenging conclusions. Sober and thoughtful. A brave and important contribution.
Elucidating 22 July 2011
By Winston D. Jen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This extensive (but not quite exhaustive) body of research takes a look at the other side of porn, the side that totalitarian censors would have you believe does not exist. Unafraid to ask confronting and as-yet unexplored questions (such as whether porn has produced any benefits for its consumers), TPR gazes through the looking glass, into bedrooms and analyses the users and consequences of pornography.

The first chapter alone is worth the cost of the tome. Living as we are in progressive 21st-century democracies, most of us are innocently naive of the sheer volume of books and films banned in the past for nebulous justifications as "obscenity" and indecent. This included information on birth control in the United States as recently as 1873. Even simple nudity was considered pornographic back in the days of ancient Greece and Rome, since they precipitated excessive libidinousness in healthy young males.

For those who are curious, this is a brief list of fictional novels that were illegal in Australia in recent decades.

William Adlington (trans.), The golden ass of Lucius Apuleius (banned 1933-1936)

Richard Aldington, All men are enemies (banned 1933-1953)

Richard Aldington, The colonel's daughter (banned 1931)

Nelson Algren, Never come morning (banned 1951)

C.E. Allen, Homosexuality (banned 1958)

C.E. Allen, The sexual perversions and abnormalities (restricted 1946-1969)

Stuart Anderson, The how and why of birth control (banned 1937)

Anon., Hash cookery (banned 1970)

Anon., The hippie papers (banned 1968)

Anon., The mad, mad world of Aubrey Beardsley (banned 1969)

Anon., Marihuana (banned 1969)

Anon., Memoirs of Cardinal Dubois (restricted 1936)

Anon., The strap returns -- new notes on flagellation (banned 1936)

Abdullah Azzam, Defence of the Muslim lands (refused classification 2006 to present)

Abdullah Azzam, Join the caravan (refused classification 2006 to present)

James Baldwin, Another country (banned 1963-1966)

Honore de Balzac, Droll stories (banned 1901-1923)

Marjorie Barnard & Flora Eldershaw, Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow (abridged before publication, 1947; published in full, 1983)

Joan Beauchamp, British imperialism in India (banned c.1935-1937)

Simone de Beauvoir, The Marquis de Sade: An essay (banned 1956-1973)

Brendan Behan, Borstal boy (banned 1958-1965)

Riza Bey, Darkest Orient (banned 1938-1953)

George Bishop, Sex behavior of the American divorcee (banned 1966)

Jean Blanche, The outsiders (banned 1958-1971)

Their research has revealed that consumers of pornography are NOT, by and large, dirty, old or male. 55% of consumers were 35 or younger. 4 per cent were into kinky BDSM. Almost 60% were religious, revealing the increasing irrelevancy of both the church and a regulatory system that is more anachronistic, draconian and Puritanical than the populace it supposedly serves.

In a nutshell, acts that are perfectly legal to engage in, provided all parties consent, are utterly illegal to film or photograph. Only Islamic theocracies have similar rules in today's modern, net savvy society. Fortunately, prosecutions are almost non-existent (even for sex shops, which are not even allowed to exist, legally). A more modern, liberal and rational stance to adopt would be this: "If you don't like it, don't watch or read it. Don't make it illegal for mature adults to purchase, so long as they are not hurting anyone." Sadly, some feminists like the ultra-communist Gail Dines and Dawn Hawkins, believe that all heterosexual sex is rape and consensual bondage fits under the United Nations' definition of torture. Anyone who cannot see the prima facie callous disregard and staunch absurdity in such a position simply isn't thinking hard enough.

Among the most inane, facile and plainly silly restrictions on pornography is the categorical and all-encompassing ban on fetishes (wax, spanking, bondage, piercings etc). One former censor revealed that the regulations forbade ALL violence in erotic films (that contain actual sex), no matter how mild, and whether the violence occurred in the sex scene itself. Australia is the embodiment of totalitarian ideals (but felicitously, not of totalitarian results).
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Not perfect, but necessary 7 Aug 2011
By Timothy S. Reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Possibly the most rigourous study on the uses of porn ever conducted, presented with plenty of interest, humour, and common sense. If there's one book the anti-porn branch of feminism never wants you to read it's this one - because it's right and they can't successfully argue against it.
1 of 14 people found the following review helpful
The usual 1970s rubbish ... 14 April 2008
By Compulsive Reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Superficial doesn't even begin to describe this advertisement for porn. I was hoping for something with a bit of substance.
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