Volume 6, Number 11 (2010)
A publication of the Faculty of Communication & Media Studies and the University Research Institute of Applied Communication National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
PORNOGRAPHY, CULTURE AND THE MASS MEDIA: DELIBERATING OVER EMERGING AND OLD PHENOMENA
KATHERINE SARIKAKIS AND LIZA TSALIKI
The role of pornography as a global industry, its impact on cultural, social and personal life and concerns around its development and linkage to the mainstream media have been the object of debate and conflict for over 30 years in the western world. On the contrary, in Greece, this debate has only just begun. This article aims to fill the gap in academic debate and analysis, by critically approaching the ways in which pornography is linked to a new, and for many equally worrying, phenomenon of the sexualisation of everyday culture and the media. The article maps the historical development of pornography and then analyses current international trends in research, law and activism. It argues that both phenomena, feeding off from each other, divide academic thought, jurisprudence and activism. Despite the many differences however, the article identifies possible common ground that avoids excessive subjectivity and individualism on the one hand, and monolithic understandings of the pornographic imagery, on the other. It proposes a partial coalition of social, cultural, education and political forces around basic questions regarding the conditions of production, distribution and consumption of pornography and urges for an open, ongoing and honest dialogue amongst constituencies, and in particular with young people.
GENDER, SEXUALITY AND BORDERS IN CRISIS: A CRITICAL APPROACH OF TRAFFICKING
Discourses on women trafficking are intertwined with state sovereignty and function as means of state-crafting. Contemporary concerns around sex labour and trafficking in women have as their historical precedent anti- white slavery campaigns as these were developed by the late 19th century and early 20th century. In this article, I try to deconstruct moral panics concerning illegal migration, border control, and increasing migrant criminality. The ideological context of anti-trafficking campaigns enforces exclusionary policies and sustains a nationalized/ nationalistic conscience of place and homeland; concurrently, it makes criminals out of illegal migrants.
“NOT A LOVE STORY”: FRAMING THE CANADIAN SEX CRISIS.
This paper traces the legacy of the NFB documentary, Not a Love Story: A Film About Pornography. The film generated extensive debate about both its aesthetic value as a cinematic text and its social value as a polemical statement against pornography. By examining the film’s structure, critical response to it and the legal-regulatory changes that followed, I suggest that the debate about pornography in Canada began from an untenable position. I argue instead to replace theories of voyeurism and media effects with those of performance and embodiment, in order to understand the complex dynamics of agency in power in pornographic media.
CHILD PORNOGRAPHY ON THE INTERNET AND POLICY QUESTIONS: THE GREEK CASE
One of the risks that have acquired a particular importance on the public agenda about the risks and opportunities for children who use the Internet is that concerning the existence of child pornographic content on the internet. This paper examines the risk of child pornography on the internet and looks at questions and challenges arising for policy-makers in Greece. Although Greece is a long-standing EU member state, it has one of the lowest penetration rates of internet and new technologies in Europe. Also, in Greece there is a lack of research data on children’s use of the internet, as well as divergence from other EU member states with respect to parents’ assessment of online risks for children and the relevant rules set in the household. These particularities, as well as the fact that child pornography makes headlines in the Greek media and propagates a rhetoric of moral panic about the internet, pose serious challenges for the ways in which policy and regulation in the field respond as appropriate. This paper critically assesses the policy and regulatory frameworks in Greece. It points to the reactive character of Internet policies and the fragmentary and penal character of Internet regulations in the country, while highlighting the gaps in public awareness of Greek society about online child pornography.
Zina of the Eye: The Production and Consumption of Veiled Pornography in the Middle East
Sarah Michelle Leonard
The veil is not just religious symbol; it is a political and social tool that carries a host of meanings. Thus the incorporation of the veil into Arab-produced amateur and professional pornographic material calls into question many issues concerning agency, sexual mores, and symbolic violence in the Middle East. Pornography is considered immoral by the vast majority of people and institutions in the Middle East. And yet there is considerable evidence that for certain segments of the population- namely males between the ages of 15-30- pornography is widely consumed and even produced. When reviewing munaqqabah pornography, it becomes clear that the veil serves both practical purposes and as a sexualized object. Munaqqabah pornography comes in a variety of forms, from video clips that are passed between mobile phones to still photos posted on message boards. This paper examines the trend of munaqqabah (veiled) pornography, and in doing so, draws some indicative conclusions regarding the socio-economic situation for Arab youth.
FROM CIVIL SOCIETY TO “PORN SOCIETY”: THE CASE OF BOURDELA.COM
This paper examines how the concept of civil society relates to the porn/sex industry as well as to individual internet users who actively participate in e-moves aiming at exchanging pornography content and information/views on commercial sex. By describing the porn portal bourdela.com, and presenting evidence from a conducted discourse analysis on the reviews/evaluations which the commentators post, we will try to show how the above relation leads to the formation of a certain kind of civil society (its ‘dark’ side), which one can call ‘porn society’.
REGULATING ADVERTISING COMMUNICATION
ALEXANDRA ADAMI AND ANDRONIKI KAVOURA
The creation of the advertising message for the presentation of the products or the services has as a prerequisite the knowledge and the familiarity with the legal and directive legislation for the way of creating and promoting the advertising communication. The aim of the paper is to describe the activities of those agents who play an important role in regard to the control of advertising communication such as the consumers’ unions, the Committee of the Protection of the Consumer, the Hellenic Radio Television Board, the Committee of Greek Advertising Agencies with the deontological codes of advertising they validate, the mass media -which are directly involved with advertising communication- so that the advertising messages will protect the consumer and legal penalties will be prevented. The people involved with advertising or the advertising company, should be aware of the legislation and the agents who may exert control in the advertising communication contributing to the best possible provision of information to the consumers which at the same time protects them.
THE 'PARADOX' OF ‘'THE- SOLD-OUT-PARADOX': PONDERING ON AN ADVERTISING SLOGAN ATHANASSIOS KATSOXIS
Τhere are utterances that are standardised as being quite rationally used in certain domains of speech, but which seem illogical, when considered otherwise. Such an utterance, which comes from a commercial –and which is often used as a slogan in commercials- as well as another standardized slogan of advertising language- are analysed in this article. Nevertheless, the following analysis on no account ‘attacks’ the way in which advertisers intend these utterances to be interpreted, as well as the way we in fact interpret them. The inference accompanying the utterances in question is compared to the one accompanying Kyburg’s well-known ‘lottery paradox’. There is also reference to communicational aspects of the slogan.