Advertisement

Pornography and Sexual Violence

  • John D. Foubert
  • Will Blanchard
  • Michael Houston
  • Richard R. WilliamsJr.
Chapter

Abstract

The availability, affordability, and accessibility of today’s pornography are ubiquitous. As rates of pornography use and the interactivity of the media have increased, their effects are becoming better understood. In this chapter, we review relevant research on the connection between sexual violence and pornography. We begin by discussing the general link between pornography use and violent behavior. Next, we explore the effects of pornography on adolescents. Later, we discuss how on-camera consent normalizes the violent behaviors. Next, we discuss violence in pornography across culture, gender inequality, and various types of pornography. When discussing pornography and men’s perpetration of sexual violence, we emphasize the importance of preexisting risk factors for sexual violence. Later, we discuss how pornography and bystander intervention intersect, abuse in intimate relationships, and vicious cycles of harm. Finally, we discuss children who appear in pornography and children who use pornography.

Keywords

Pornography Rape Sexual violence Violent behavior Gender Bystander intervention 

References

  1. Alexy, E. M., Burgess, A. W., & Prentky, R. A. (2009). Pornography use as a risk marker for an aggressive pattern of behavior among sexually reactive children and adolescents. Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, 14, 442.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Allen, M., D’Alessio, D., Emmers, T. M., & Gebhardt, L. (1996). The role of educational briefings in mitigating effects of experimental exposure to violent sexually explicit material: A meta-analysis. The Journal of Sex Research, 33(2), 135–141.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Arakawa, D. R., Flanders, C., & Hatfield, E. (2012). Are variations in gender equality evident in pornography? A cross-cultural study. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 36(2), 279–285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Babchishin, K. M., Hanson, R. K., & VanZuylen, H. (2014). Online child pornography offenders are different: A meta-analysis of the characteristics of online and offline sex offenders against children. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44(1), 45–66.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Baer, J. L., Kohut, T., & Fisher, W. A. (2015). Is pornography use associated with anti-woman sexual aggression? Re-examining the Confluence Model with third variable considerations. The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 24(2), 160–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bouffard, L. A. (2010). Exploring the utility of entitlement in understanding sexual aggression. Journal of Criminal Justice, 38(5), 870–879.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Braithwaite, S., Coulson, G., Keddington, K., & Fincham, F. (2015). The influence of pornography on sexual scripts and hooking up among emerging adults in college. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44(1), 111–123.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Braun-Courville, D. K., & Rojas, M. (2009). Exposure to explicit web sites and adolescent sexual attitudes and behaviors. Journal of Adolescent Health, 45, 156–162.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bridges, A. J., & Anton, C. (2013). Pornography and violence against women. In Violence against girls and women: international perspectives (pp. 183–206).Google Scholar
  10. Bridges, A. J., Wosnitzer, R., Scharrer, E., Sun, C., & Liberman, R. (2010). Aggression and sexual behavior in best-selling pornography videos: A content analysis update. Violence Against Women, 16(10), 1065–1085.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Brown, J. D., & L’Engle, K. L. (2009). X-rated: Sexual attitudes and behaviors associated with U.S. early adolescents’ exposure to sexually explicit media. Communication Research, 36(1), 129–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Carroll, J., Busby, D., Willoughby, B., & Brown, C. (2017). The porn gap: Differences in men's and women’s pornography patterns in couple relationships. Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, 16(2), 146–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Clevenger, S. L., Navarro, J. N., & Jasinski, J. L. (2016). A matter of low self-control? Exploring differences between child pornography possessors and child pornography producers/distributers using self-control theory. Sexual Abuse, 28, 555–571.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Davis, K. C., Norris, J., George, W. H., Martell, J., & Heiman, J. R. (2006). Rape-myth congruent beliefs in women resulting from exposure to violent pornography: Effects of alcohol and sexual arousal. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 21(9), 1208–1223.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. DeKeseredy, W. S. (2014). Thinking critically about adult pornography and woman abuse: New progressive directions in research, theory, and policy. Paper presented at the National Deviancy Conference, Teeside University.Google Scholar
  16. DeKeseredy, W. S. (2015). Critical criminological understandings of adult pornography and woman abuse new progressive directions in research and theory. International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, 4(4).Google Scholar
  17. DeKeseredy, W. S. (2016). Pornography and violence against women. In C. A. Cuevas & C. M. Dennison (Eds.), The Wiley handbook on the psychology of violence (1st ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.Google Scholar
  18. DeKeseredy, W. S., & Hall-Sanchez, A. (2017). Adult pornography and violence against women in the heartland: Results from a rural Southeast Ohio study. Violence Against Women, 23(7), 830–849.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. DeKeseredy, W. S., & Olsson, P. (2011). Adult pornography, male peer support, and violence against women: The contribution of the “dark side” of the internet. In M. V. Martin, M. A. Garcia-Ruiz, & A. Edwards (Eds.), Technology for facilitating humanity and combating social deviations: Interdisciplinary perspectives. Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference.Google Scholar
  20. Dines, G. (2010). Pornland: How porn has hijacked our sexuality. Boston, MA: Beacon Press.Google Scholar
  21. Foubert, J. D. (2017). How pornography harms: What teens, Young adults, parents and pastors need to know. Boston: LifeRich Publishers.Google Scholar
  22. Foubert, J. D., & Bridges, A. J. (2017). What is the attraction? Pornography use motives in relation to bystander intervention. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 32(20), 3071–3089.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Foubert, J. D., Brosi, M. W., & Bannon, R. S. (2011). Pornography viewing among fraternity men: Effects on bystander intervention, rape myth acceptance and behavioral intent to commit sexual assault. Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity, 18(4), 212–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Foubert, J. D., & Rizzo, A. J. (2013). Integrating religiosity and pornography use into the prediction of bystander efficacy and willingness to prevent sexual assault. Journal of Psychology and Theology, 41(3), 242–251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Fritz, N., & Paul, B. (2017). From orgasms to spanking: A content analysis of the agentic and objectifying sexual scripts in feminist, for women, and mainstream pornography. Sex Roles, 77(9–10), 639–652.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Gagnon, J. H., & Simon, W. (2005). Sexual conduct: The social sources of human sexuality. Chicago: Aldine.Google Scholar
  27. Gorman, S., Monk-Turner, E., & Fish, J. N. (2010). Free adult internet web sites: How prevalent are degrading acts? Gender Issues, 27(3–4), 131–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Häggström-Nordin, E., Sandberg, J., Hanson, U., & Tyde’n, T. (2006). “It’s everywhere”: Young Swedish people’s thoughts and reflections about pornography. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 20, 386–393.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Hald, G., & Malamuth, M. (2015). Experimental effects of exposure to pornography: The moderating effect of personality and mediating effect of sexual arousal. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44(1), 99–109.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hald, G. M., Kuyper, L., Adam, P. C. G., & Wit, J. B. F. (2013). Does viewing explain doing? Assessing the association between sexually explicit materials use and sexual behaviors in a large sample of Dutch adolescents and young adults. Journal of Sexual Medicine, 10(12), 2986–2995.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hald, G. M., Malamuth, N. N., & Lange, T. (2013). Pornography and sexist attitudes among heterosexuals. Journal of Communication, 63(4), 638–660.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Henshaw, M., Ogloff, J. R. P., & Clough, J. A. (2017). Looking beyond the screen: A critical review of the literature on the online child pornography offender. Sexual Abuse, 29(5), 416–445.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Internet Watch Foundation & Microsoft. (2015). Emerging Patterns and Trends Report #1 Youth-Produced Sexual Content.Google Scholar
  34. Isaacs, C., & Fisher, W. (2008). A computer based educational intervention to address potential negative effects of Internet pornography. Journal of Communication Studies, 59(1), 1–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kernsmith, P. D., & Kernsmither, R. M. (2009). Female pornography use and sexual coercion perpetration. Deviant Behavior, 30, 589–610.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kingston, D., Malamuth, N., Fedoroff, P., & Marshall, W. (2009). The importance of individual differences in pornography use: Theoretical perspectives and implications for treating sexual offenders. Journal of Sex Research, 46(2–3), 216–232.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Klaassen, M. J., & Peter, J. (2015). Gender (in) equality in Internet pornography: A content analysis of popular pornographic Internet videos. The Journal of Sex Research, 52(7), 721–735.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Laier, C., Schulte, F., & Brand, M. (2012). Pornographic picture processing interferes with working memory performance. The Journal of Sex Research, 50(7), 642–652.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Landripet, I. (2016). Perceived pornography realism as a mediator of the association between pornography use and problematic sexual behavior among male adolescents. In 13th Congress of the European Federation of Sexology.Google Scholar
  40. Lo, V., & Wei, R. (2005). Exposure to internet pornography and Taiwanese Adolescents’ sexual attitudes and behavior. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 49(2), 221–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Malamuth, N., Hald, M., & Koss, G. (2012). Pornography, individual differences in risk and men’s acceptance of violence against women in a representative sample. Sex Roles, 66(7), 427–439.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Malamuth, N., & Huppin, M. (2005). Pornography and teenagers: The importance of individual differences. Adolescent Medicine Clinics, 16(2), 315.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Malamuth, N. M., & Impett, E. A. (2001). Research on sex and the media: What do we know about effects on children and adolescents? In D. G. Singer & J. L. Singer (Eds.), Handbook of children and the media (pp. 269–287). Thousand Oak, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  44. McKibbin, G., Humphreys, C., & Hamilton, B. (2017). “Talking about child sexual abuse would have helped me”: Young people who sexually abused reflect on preventing harmful sexual behavior. Child Abuse & Neglect, 70, 210–221.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Mikorski, R. M., & Szymanski, D. (2017). Masculine norms, peer group, pornography, Facebook, and men's sexual objectification of women. Psychology of Men and Masculinity, 18(4), 257–267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Owens, E., Behun, R., Manning, J., & Reid, R. (2012). The impact of internet pornography on adolescents: A review of the research. Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity, 19(1–2), 99–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Peter, J., & Valkenburg, P. (2016). Adolescents and pornography: A review of 20 years of research. The Journal of Sex Research, 53(4–5), 509–531.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Peter, J., & Valkenburg, P. M. (2006). Adolescents’ exposure to sexually explicit material on the internet. Communication Research, 33, 178–204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Peter, J., & Valkenburg, P. M. (2008). Adolescents’ exposure to sexually explicit internet material and sexual preoccupancy: A three-wave panel study. Media Psychology, 11, 207–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Peter, J., & Valkenburg, P. M. (2010). Adolescents’ use of sexually explicit internet material and sexual uncertainty: The role of involvement and gender. Communication Monographs, 77, 357–375.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Romero-Sánchez, M., Toro-García, V., Horvath, M., & Megías, J. (2017). More than a magazine: Exploring the links between lads’ mags, rape myth acceptance, and rape proclivity. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 32(4), 515–534.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Romito, P., & Beltramini, L. (2011). Watching pornography: Gender differences, violence and victimization. An exploratory study in Italy. Violence Against Women, 17(10), 1313–1326.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Ropelato, J. (2010). Internet pornography statistics. Retrieved from TopTenReviews.com
  54. Rudman, L., & Mescher, K. (2012). Of animals and objects. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 38(6), 734–746.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Sabina, C., Wolak, J., & Finkelhor, D. (2008). The nature and dynamics of internet pornography exposure for youth. Cyber Psychology and Behavior, 11, 691–693.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Seto, M. C., Hermann, C. A., Kjellgren, C., Priebe, G., Sveden, C., & Langstro, N. (2014). Viewing child pornography: Prevalence and correlates in a representative community sample of young Swedish men. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44(1), 67–79.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Shim, J. W., Kwon, M., & Cheng, H. I. (2015). Analysis of representation of sexuality on women’s and men’s pornographic websites. Social Behavior and Personality: An International Journal, 43(1), 53–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Simons, L., Simons, R., Lei, M.-K., & Sutton, T. (2012). Exposure to harsh parenting and pornography as explanations for males’ sexual coercion and females’ sexual victimization. Violence and Victims, 27(3), 378–395.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Smid, W., Schepers, K., Kamphuis, J. H., van Linden, S., & Bartling, S. (2015). Prioritizing child pornography notifications: Predicting direct victimization. Sexual Abuse, 27(4), 398–413.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Smith, P. K., Thompson, F., & Davidson, J. (2014). Cyber safety for adolescent girls: Bullying, harassment, sexting, pornography, and solicitation. Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology, 26(5), 360–365.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Stanley, N., Barter, C., Wood, M., Aghtaie, N., Larkins, C., Lanau, A., & Overlien, C. (2018). Pornography, sexual coercion and abuse and sexting in young people’s intimate relationships: A European study. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 33(19), 2919–2944.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Sun, C., Bridges, A., Johnson, J., & Ezzell, M. (2016). Pornography and the male sexual script: An analysis of consumption and sexual relations. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 45(4), 995–995.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Sun, C., Ezzell, M., & Kendall, O. (2017). Naked aggression: The meaning and practice of ejaculating on a Woman’s face. Violence Against Women; Thousand Oaks, 23(14), 1710–1729.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Ullen, M. (2014). Pornography and its critical reception: Toward a theory of masturbation. Jump Cut: A Review of Contemporary Media, 51.Google Scholar
  65. Valkenburg, P. M. (2010). Processes underlying the effects of adolescents’ use of sexually explicit internet material: The role of perceived realism. Communication Research, 37, 375–399.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Van Oosten, J., Jochen, P., & Vandenbosch, L. (2017). Adolescents’ Sexual Media Use and willingness to engage in casual sex: differential relations and underlying processes. Human Communication Research, 43(1), 127–147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Vandenbosch, L., & Van Oosten, M. (2018). Explaining the relationship between sexually explicit internet material and casual sex: A two-step mediation model of perceived utility and instrumental attitudes. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 34(2), 150–159.Google Scholar
  68. Vannier, S. A., Currie, A. B., & O’Sullivan, L. F. (2014). Schoolgirls and soccer moms: A content analysis of free “teen” and “MILF” online pornography. The Journal of Sex Research, 51(3), 253–264.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Vega, V., & Malamuth, N. (2007). Predicting sexual aggression: The role of pornography in the context of general and specific risk factors. Aggressive Behavior, 33(2), 104–117.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Walker, A., Makin, D., & Morczek, A. (2016). Finding Lolita: A comparative analysis of interest in youth-oriented pornography. Sexuality & Culture, 20(3), 657–683.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Wery, A., & Billieux, J. (2016). Online sexual activities: An exploratory study of problematic and non-problematic usage patterns in a sample of men. Computers in Human Behavior, 56(March), 257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Whisnant, R. (2016). “But what about feminist porn?” Examining the work of Tristan Taormino. Sexualization, Media, & Society, 2(2), 1–12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Willoughby, B., Carroll, J., Busby, J., & Brown, S. (2016). Differences in pornography use among couples: Associations with satisfaction, stability, and relationship processes. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 45(1), 145–158.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Willoughby, B., Young-Petersen, B., & Leonhardt, N. (2018). Exploring trajectories of pornography use through adolescence and emerging adulthood. The Journal of Sex Research, 55(3), 297–309.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Wolak, J., Finkelhor, D., & Mitchell, K. (2011). Child pornography possessors: Trends in offender and case characteristics. Sexual Abuse, 23(1), 22–42.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. World Health Organization. (2006). Preventing child maltreatment: A guide to taking action and generating evidence. Geneva: World Health Organization and International Society for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.Google Scholar
  77. Wright, P. (2011). Mass media effects on youth sexual behavior assessing the claim for causality. Annals of the International Communication Association, 35(1), 343–385.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Wright, P., & Bae, J. (2015). A national prospective study of pornography consumption and gendered attitudes toward women. Sexuality & Culture, 19(3), 444–463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Wright, P., Sun, C., Steffen, N., & Tokunaga, R. (2015). Pornography, alcohol, and male sexual dominance. Communication Monographs, 82(2), 252–270.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Wright, P. J. (2014). Pornography and the sexual socialization of children: Current knowledge and a theoretical future. Journal of Children and Media, 8(3), 305–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Wright, P. J., & Tokunaga, R. S. (2017). Women’s perceptions of their male partners’ pornography consumption and relational, sexual, self, and body satisfaction: Toward a theoretical model. Annals of the International Communication Association, 42(1), 55–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Ybarra, M., & Thompson, R. (2018). Predicting the emergence of sexual violence in adolescence. Prevention Science, 19(4), 403–415.PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Zhou, Y., & Paul, B. (2016). Lotus blossom or dragon lady: A content analysis of “Asian women” online pornography. Sexuality & Culture, 20(4), 1083–1100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • John D. Foubert
    • 1
  • Will Blanchard
    • 2
  • Michael Houston
    • 2
  • Richard R. WilliamsJr.
    • 2
  1. 1.Union UniversityJacksonUSA
  2. 2.Oklahoma State UniversityStillwaterUSA

Personalised recommendations