Commercial Sex/Sex and Media
Initial questions to consider?
Have you ever bought a product because the advertising sold you?
Was sex used to sell it?
What made you want to buy the product?
SSex and Mass Media
The naked body is still the primary means of selling a product
Portrayal of sex is blatant
Men are used to sell women’s products
Women are not used to sell male products
Initially print, magazines, newspapers
Mores of the time dictated how individuals could be presented
Increasingly over the years sexuality has been introduced
Sex sells both products and television
Increased sexuality in mainstream television programs to bring viewers back from HBO
and satellite programs
50 years ago a movie or television program would not be released unless the couple
slept in separate beds
Now: can view varying degree of sexual explicitness in the home
Erotic Presentation in History
Dawn of ancient civilization, people were drawing erotic images on walls
Greece is famous for the erotic art that adorned bowls and urns
Pornography did not emerge as a distinct category until the middle 18 century
Obscenity was illegal among the Puritans because it was an offence against God
Trace modern pornographic novel back to Renaissance writer, Pietro Aretino (1492-
Story of Pornography
About those who attempt to identify or quantify what it is
Struggle for those that oppose it
Erotica is not pornography but within the acceptable bounds of decency
French philosopher, Michel Foucault, referred to the constant sexuality in the media as a
modern compulsion to speak of sex incessantly
Portrayal of sexuality is old as art itself; pornography and censorship are more modern
The church in an effort to av