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Babbler # 5062

posted 13 April 2005 10:05 AM      Profile for thwap        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In the thread in "Feminism" on the passing of Andrea Dworkin, one babbler wrote the following:

I am not sure about connecting the degradation of Abu Grahib or Guantanamo with contemporary pornography. I have seen 'erotic' work collected in Taschen (so its cool) from the 18th and 17th century which would be banned now. I don't think that torturers in those times referred to line drawings to get their inspiration. They did a pretty good job all on their own.

A few things,

1. There's a lot true in that. Torturers don't need pornography to come up with ideas, and all pornography ain't about torture and degradation.

2. I'm not anti-porn (or "erotica" if that's how you want to call it).

3. But I had an experience, working in a warehouse not long ago, where I got on great with the kids. One guy though, liked to talk, talk, talk, ... and i'd quietly listen to him to hear what atrocities he'd be up to on the weekends, just to see how bad he could be. Y'know, he'd be at a party and he'd sucker punch the smallest guy there, so long as his "homies" ["big boys, lemme tell ya man"] were backing him up.
So, this kid liked to spend a lot of time on porno sites, and there was one he looked at that I'd like to share with you:

Evidently, some healthy young American boys went down to Colombia for a vacation. They apparently got some local Colombian prostitutes for the entire day for some $50. ["These girls were 'mint' too man. Primo girls."]
They took them to some cabin and did a photo shoot of themselves with the prostitutes, and they took some pictures that were based on the Abu Ghraib torture photos. Prostitutes wearing hoods, prostitutes lying in a pile, etc.,

I just thought his little anecdote was an incredible example of the entire imperialist project. The young imperialist lads, paying $50 dollars to abuse a Third World prostitute for the entire day, relaying their adventures through the wonders of digital photography and the internet, basing their amusement on the activities of their countrymen and women in the imperialist occupation of Iraq.

Sometimes it pays to listen. I could neve have come up with something like that on my own.

From: Hamilton | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 478

posted 13 April 2005 10:15 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
thwap, in the long essay that Susan Sontag wrote right after Abu Ghraib (published in the NYTimes magazine -- must have been one of the last things she wrote), she commented on a link between pornography of the industrial sort and torture.

She was mainly observing that the tormentors we know about so far were not trained interrogators, just low-ranking soldiers, and when given licence to torment others seem to have relied on clicheed images that they would have picked up from industrial pornography.

Another woman made similar points even more insistently in a Guardian link we had at the time.

I don't think that that explains entirely what people do when unleashed to hurt -- I think there is something in our animal brains that takes over when we start. But commercial images certainly have an influence over the forms of abuse that people fit their impulses into.

From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 6289

posted 13 April 2005 11:52 AM      Profile for remind     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Naomi Klein's mother Ann, did a documentary on pornography called "its not a love story". A great documentary BTW.

In it, her investigations found that the first person to actively promote and use pornography was Hitler. She noted that his psych studies showed that it supports the notion/thought that women and children are just objects. This she said, affords the ability to commit autrocities upon them as they are not human anyway just objects.

From: "watching the tide roll away" | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 7709

posted 13 April 2005 12:43 PM      Profile for nister     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Sidebar: where did the Abu Ghraib gear come from? Did someone Stateside pack enough leashes and leather accoutrement in their duffel or sea bag for all occasions? Has anyone claimed ownership?
From: Barrie, On | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 8857

posted 15 April 2005 09:14 AM      Profile for boywonder19     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here is an article on pornography and Abu Ghraib, if anyone is interested.

Abu Ghraib: Postcards From the Edge

From: New York | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged

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