Anti-pornography Narratives as Self-Fulfilling Prophecies: Religious Variation in the Effect that Pornography Viewing has on the Marital Happiness of Husbands
- 207 Downloads
Using a mixed methods design that compares quantitative content analysis of popular religious magazines with statistical analysis of national survey data, we show how the anti-pornography narratives that are predominant within different religious traditions can influence the effect that pornography viewing has on the marital happiness of husbands within those traditions. More specifically, we propose a causal chain that explains how meso-level anti-pornography narratives can influence micro-level pornography-effect scripts and, in turn, influence the effect that pornography viewing has on the marital happiness of husbands. We suggest, then, that this kind of causal chain can be thought of as a type of self-fulfilling prophecy. However, instead of operating exclusively at the micro-level as self-fulfilling prophecies have typically been theorized as doing, we apply the notion of the self-fulfilling prophecy to the meso-level, so that rather than just considering how individual thinking can lead to individual outcomes, we also consider how collective thinking can lead to collective outcomes.
KeywordsSelf-fulfilling prophecy Moral narratives Religious influence Pornography Marital happiness
The authors thank the following persons for their helpful comments and suggestions: Jim Aho, Candace Christensen, Gesine Hearn, Dan Olson, Trina Running, Jim Stoutenborough, Laura Thomas, and three anonymous reviewers.
- American Theological Library Association. 2011. ATLA Religion Database. http://www.atla.com/.
- Caughlin, John P., Ted L. Huston, and Renate M. Houts. 2000. How does personality matter in marriage? An examination of trait anxiety, interpersonal negativity, and marital satisfaction. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 78 (2): 326–336. doi: 10.1037/0022-35220.127.116.116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Djupe, Paul A., and Christopher P. Gilbert. 2003. The prophetic pulpit: Clergy, churches, and communities in American politics. Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield.Google Scholar
- Downey, Geraldine, Antonio L. Freitas, Benjamin Michaelis, and Hala Khouri. 1998. The self-fulfilling prophecy in close relationships: Rejection sensitivity and rejection by romantic partners. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 75 (2): 545–560. doi: 10.1037/0022-3518.104.22.1685.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Durkheim, Emile. 1915. The elementary forms of religious life. London: George Allen & Unwin.Google Scholar
- EBSCO Information Services. 2014. EBSCO Academic Search Premier. https://www.ebscohost.com/.
- Gagnon, John H., and William Simon. 2011. Sexual conduct: The social sources of human sexuality, 2nd ed. Piscataway: AldineTransaction.Google Scholar
- General Social Survey. 2014. National Opinion Research Center. http://gss.norc.org/.
- Goffman, Erving. 1959. The presentation of self in everyday life. New York: Anchor Books.Google Scholar
- Johnson, Luke Timothy. 2014. The Commonweal Catholic. Commonweal, October 24, 16–19.Google Scholar
- Kwee, Alex W., Amy W. Dominguez, and Donald Ferrell. 2007. Sexual addiction and Christian college men: Conceptual, assessment, and treatment challenges. Journal of Psychology and Christianity 26 (1): 3–13.Google Scholar
- Lambert, Nathaniel M., Sesen Negash, Tyler F. Stillman, Spencer B. Olmstead, and Frank D. Fincham. 2012. A love that doesn’t last: Pornography consumption and weakened commitment to one’s romantic partner. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 31 (4): 410–438. doi: 10.1521/jscp.2012.31.4.410.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lumpkins, Crystal Y., K. Allen Greiner, Christine Daley, Natabhona M. Mabachi, and Kris Neuhaus. 2013. Promoting healthy behavior from the pulpit: Clergy share their perspectives on effective health communication in the African American church. Journal of Religion and Health 52 (4): 1093–1107. doi: 10.1007/s10943-011-9533-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- McAdams, Dan P., Michelle Albaugh, Emily Farber, Jennifer Daniels, Regina L. Logan, and Brad Olson. 2008. Family metaphors and moral intuitions: How conservatives and liberals narrate their lives. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 95 (4): 978–990. doi: 10.1037/a0012650.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Olmstead, Spencer B., Sesen Negash, Kay Pasley, and Frank D. Fincham. 2013. Emerging adults’ expectations for pornography use in the context of future committed romantic relationships: A qualitative study. Archives of Sexual Behavior 42 (4): 625–635. doi: 10.1007/s10508-012-9986-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Parsons, Talcott. 1951. The social system. Glencoe: The Free Press.Google Scholar
- Swidler, Ann. 2001. What anchors cultural practices. In The practice turn in contemporary theory, pp 83–101, ed. Theodore R. Schatzki, Karin Knorr Cetina, and Eike von Savigny. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Watzlawick, Paul. 2011. Self-fulfilling prophecies. In The production of reality: Essays and readings on social interaction, ed. Jodi O’Brien, 392–408. Los Angeles: Pine Forge Press.Google Scholar
- Weber, Max. 1930. The protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar