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Getting Off: Pornography and the End of Masculinity
Synopses & Reviews
In our culture, porn makes the man. So argues Robert Jensen in Getting Off: Pornography and the End of Masculinity. Jensen’s treatise begins with a simple demand: “Be a man.” It ends with a defiant response: “I chose to struggle to be a human being.” The journey from masculinity to humanity is found in the candid and intelligent exploration of porn’s devastating role in defining masculinity.
Getting Off seamlessly blends personal anecdotes from Jensen’s years as a feminist anti-pornography activist with scholarly research. In his trademark conversational style, he shows how mainstream pornography reinforces social definitions of manhood and influences men’s attitudes about women and how to treat them.
Pornography is a thriving multi-billion-dollar industry; it drives the direction of emerging media technology. Pornography also makes for complicated politics. These days, anti-porn arguments are assumed to be “anti-sex” and thus a critical debate is silenced. This book breaks that silence. Alarming and thought-provoking, Getting Off asks tough, but crucial, questions about pornography, sex, manhood, and the way toward genuine social justice.
Robert Jensen is an associate professor in the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin. He is the author of The Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism and White Privilege and Citizens of the Empire: The Struggle to Claim Our Humanity.
Does porn make the man?
Jensen's brutally honest assessment of the increasingly pornographic world has never been more difficult to face, or more necessary.-Gail Dines, co-editor of Gender, Race, and Class in Media
Agree or disagree with his analyses or conclusions, but this brave book challenges men-and women-to face this crucial and sometimes painful subject with courage and hope. -Jackson Katz, author of The Macho Paradox: Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help
Expertly combining 'the personal' with 'the political, ' Robert Jensen exposes the shocking misogyny of today's pornography and forces us to face the ugliness of American masculinity. A wake-up call to men and women alike.-Sonali Kolhatkar, host of Pacifica Radio's Uprising
Pornography is big business-a multi-billion dollar industry. It also makes for complicated politics. Anti-pornography arguments are frequently dismissed as patently anti-sex-and ultimately anti-feminist-silencing at the gate a critical discussion of pornography's relationship to violence against women and even what it means to be a real man.
In his most personal and difficult book to date, Robert Jensen launches a powerful critique of mainstream pornography that promises to reignite one of the fiercest debates in contemporary feminism. At once alarming and thought-provoking, Getting Off asks tough but crucial questions about pornography, manhood, and paths toward genuine social justice.
About the Author
Robert Jensen is a professor of media law, ethics and politics at the University of Texas, Austin. He is the author of Heart of Whiteness and Citizens of Empire. He also writes for popular media, and his opinion and analytic pieces on foreign policy, politics and race have appeared in papers and magazines throughout the United States.
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