25, 000 Years of Erotic Freedom Hardcover – 2 Oct 2009
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"Sexually progressive cultures gave us literature, philosophy, civilization and the rest, while sexually restrictive cultures gave us the Dark Ages and the Holocaust". (Alan Moore)" --Alan Moore
About the Author
Alan Moore lives in Northampton, England and is most famous for his influential work in comics, including the acclaimed comic books Watchmen, V for Vendetta and From Hell. In 2006 Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie released Lost Girls, an illustrated series of erotic art exploring the possible sexual meanings in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Peter Pan and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. He is presently at work on his new novel, Jerusalem.
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Top Customer Reviews
The essay is a history of tasty art and facetiae (what I wouldn't give to get a look at his library) and its suppression or express-ability in various cultures, as well as being Mr Moore's thesis that free expression of pornographic arts acts as a safety valve which diminishes sex crime in those cultures that allow such. This, of course, is not simply whether or not pornography is merely legal in a society, but whether it is accepted in that society. Porn is legal in the UK & US but it is still frowned on, and is kept in the gutter by the hysterical, anile prudery of the tabloid mainstream media. (That boring circular argument that goes: it's kept in the gutter where it gets filthy - that filth means it is only fit for the gutter.) Mr Moore compares the UK & US with other countries such as Denmark, Spain and Holland, where pornography, as it was in Ancient Greece and Rome, is part of mainstream culture and is an unshocking, quotidian thing. (And in the case of Spain this is despite being a Catholic country. But a Catholic country wherein the people are grown-up enough to expect their priests to take (female, at least) mistresses and sire the odd backstairs sprog here and there.) This is why I echo Mr Moore's call for pornography to be not excluded from mainstream art in this country, but do not share his optimism in seeing this happen. You can lead a horse to water... The Anglo-Saxon horse just won't drink water that it thinks is dirty.Read more ›
Moore perceives a correlation between sexual liberation & socially enlightened societies, drawing upon examples such as the ancient Greeks, who were constantly surrounded by erotic friezes & statues of "Pan violating many of our current barnyard... and a really slutty nanny goat in the bargain." Conversely, he believes that Constantine's adaptation of Christianity led to the downfall of the Roman Empire & a cultural shift towards repression & sexual guilt which ushered in the Dark Ages. While early Christian churches also contained images of naked flesh to get punters on pews, the context was very different from that of ancient Greece, since "implicitly, it was acceptable to enjoy sexual imagery as long as you accepted also that such acts were sinful and felt suitably ashamed and guilty if you were in any way aroused by their depiction. This established the immediate link between the perusal of pornography and intense self-loathing or embarrassment, which sill exists today throughout most of the Western world."
This isn't an academic piece, so there's no referencing to reinforce Moore's musings, although of one particularly far-fetched Victorian practice, he impishly concedes that "yes, I know it sounds ridiculous, but I was told that by Malcolm McLaren, and if you can't trust Malcolm McLaren then whom can you trust?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Alan Moore does it again ... a mesmerizing and often hilarious account of porn through the epochs from one of the greatest writers of our time, and one of the most visionary of men... Read morePublished on 23 Mar. 2012 by SeaGoat under Sirius
This is a lovely book, nicely bound and with an interesting, and in places, quite funny essay. It only took me a few hours to read through it. Read morePublished on 9 Mar. 2012 by jbarrett