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XXX: A Woman's Right to Pornography Hardcover – September, 1995


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 243 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; 1st edition (September 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312136269
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312136260
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,968,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

McElroy, the president of Feminists for Free Expression/Canada and the editor of Freedom, Feminism and the State (Cato Inst., 1991. 2d ed.), advocates pornography as part of a free, healthy flow of information about sex needed by society, including women. She posits a "value neutral definition" of pornography that some may find limited: "the explicit artistic depiction of men and/or women as sexual beings." While "radical feminists" (e.g., Dworkin, MacKinnon) oppose pornography as violence, McElroy defends the right of women to consume it and to be involved in its production. A survey of 41 COYOTE (Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics) members is included. This work is useful in providing access to all aspects of a serious issue and should be read in conjunction with Diana E.H. Russell's Against Pornography: The Evidence of Harm (Russell, 1994). For women's studies collections.?Helen Rippier Wheeler, formerly of UC-Berkeley, SLIS
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

The insistence that all feminists call for a ban on pornography has received several cogent replies lately. Strossen's Defending Pornography took a lively, thoroughly researched shot at lawyer Catherine MacKinnon and her followers' censorship demands. McElroy agrees with Strossen's legal arguments and takes the issue a few steps further. She asserts that elements of pornography can actually benefit women and cites historical precedent to show that an environment of greater freedom for all sexual expression better enables discussion of such important issues as birth control and venereal disease. At the level of the individual, pornography, McElroy says, "provides women with a real sense of what is sexually available to them" and "is how-to literature for those who lack real-world experience." McElroy supplements her well-researched opinions with insightful interviews with outspoken women who work in the porn industry, which may help make XXX one of the more provocative books on this issue, albeit one that is ultimately more concerned with fomenting positive discussion than raising eyebrows. Aaron Cohen

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 6, 1999
Format: Paperback
if you love porn, this will arm you against its opponents. if you hate it this will most likely change your mind or at least give you a reasoned argument to consider. mcelroy combines interviews and surveys and refutes feminist canon on a subject that is relevant but taboo in our society and thus underresearched.
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 23, 1998
Format: Paperback
This book changed my whole thinking about women and porn. McElroy actually talks to women within the industry and proves that women are not coerced into the porn industry, and are actually well regarded. Her last chapter, which proves that porn is GOOD for women, is fantastic. Her empirical evidence is first-rate.
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17 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Mike Renzulli on July 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
Wendy McElroy did an excellent job writing this expose about the adult entertainment industry.

Her in depth interviews with adult film actresses, producers and directors rebuffs accusations by pro-cencorship/anti-porn feminists that the adult entertainment industry is an enslaver of women, encourages rape (she herself was a rape victim) and that women who work in the industry are "victims of patriarchial oppression" or are "psychologically damaged".

In an unflinching and honest fashion, McElroy rightfully points out that adult entertainment empowers women since they can earn millions of dollars working in this industry and be featured as the main stars of the films or clubs they perform in. If your curious as to all of the controversy surrounding adult entertainment, read this book.

It certainly was an eye opener for me and a great read at that.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 7, 1998
Format: Paperback
A cogent, straightforward presentation of the politics that lead to an extreme group's ascent to power within the feminist ranks. It's the first time I've actually understood the motivation, hysteria, and history of sex in relation to women's rights and both conservative and feminist ideology. McElroy offered reasonable definitions and actual information from women within the porn industry - much of it opposite the views being offered by women and men "defending" them. Very, very interesting and easy reading.
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8 of 14 people found the following review helpful By M.J. Rose on December 6, 1998
Format: Paperback
I read this book 2 years ago and found it to be not only edifying but electrifying. Her thinking is not only logical but new and powerful. My novel, Lip Service, owes a lot to her insights and I am thankful for women like Wendy who are not afraid to think out of the square.
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