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I am a feminist and I am aroused by pornography. I know Dworkin would say I have internalized my oppression and that feminism and pornography are mutually exclusive. I also know Gloria Steinem would say as long as I consume erotica I'm ok. But I think the distinction between pornography and erotica is a very subjective one. There are lots of interpretive and representational questions that are raised by this position.

I don't think I should have to choose between one or the other. I certainly think pornography can be a healthy expression of sexuality. Am I a bad feminist? - Sarah

Though I am certainly not the arbiter of who is/isn't a good feminist, nor is anyone for that matter, I can offer my own perspective, which is that as long as your desires don't hurt other people - i.e. as long as the pornography that turns you on seems to be by/about people who are consciously making decisions to be pornographed, then your "hobby" isn't bad.

The problem enters when your purchasing of pornography is on the backs of other women - i.e. when you indirectly or directly support an industry or specific company that is harmful/hurtful to women. And this rule would apply to any industry as well, not just pornography. For instance, recently sweatshop labor has made it's way into the news and certainly supporting some companies means supporting these companies' underpayment of women. We have to choose our own battles and sometimes those collide with other people's priorities. I hope that makes sense.


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