The Character and Extent of Pornography


There are various theories that social scientists use to explainhuman sexual behavior. A human approach to pornography has variousperspectives of their behavior. The primary factor in the social,biological, psychological and the evolutionary environment explainsthe human attitude towards human behavior. Ogas and Goddam liken theinternet to a dark room, which is a metaphorical representation ofthe ‘dark room experiment’ that sought to understand humanbehavior when they are not under the scrutiny of the others. In thedark room that assured anonymity, more than 90% of the participantsshowed sexual tendencies towards each other (Ogas &amp Gaddam,2011). The internet provides individuals with a chance to expresstheir feeling without the fear of being subjected to social judgment.

The increased use of computers and the internet enables individualsto access online pornographic sites from the comfort of their homes(Cooper et al., 2003). The online platforms enable individuals toexpress their most secretive sexual feelings that only remain asecret in the dark metaphorical room. The scientific analysis ofpornography affirms that there are certain aspects of human behaviorthat are expressed in secret in fear of the social judgment. Thereason people intensively log into pornographic sites is to fulfilltheir secretive desires that would rather remain a secret.

Various theories explain people attitude and character towardspornography. The Marxist conflict theory focuses on people producingand consuming products rather than focusing on the objects ofconsumption (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). The Marxist theory providesthat capitalism create a disconnection by alienating the producerfrom the consumer. The disconnect makes the items produced only tobecome commodities that can be exchanged for any determined value.The Marxist theory argues that the commodity fetishism is unnaturaland undesirable because the commodities can conceal but not replacethe actual relationships among people (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). AsOgas and Gaddam put it, the commoditization of pornography results incertain disconnects. It cuts the link between the ethical andemotional perspectives of its production and the actual act ofconsuming it. The act of commoditizing pornography serves as the bondbetween production and its consumption. It, therefore, neutralizesany ethical consideration associated with its production andconsequently encourages people to continue accepting as part of theirlives (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). However, it is worth noting that thedisconnect between the producers and the consumers forces them to usethe dark rooms to reach each other. Since people pay for it, theproducers will continue producing and commoditizing pornography.

Feminism has had mixed feeling on pornography. Some of the sexualactions in pornography, for example, BDSM, have been in the spotlightas violence against women (Cooper et al., 2003). However, other formsof pornography help women to express their sexual desires. Thefeminist theory indicates that most of the pornographic sites overexpose women more than men (Cooper et al., 2003). The numbers ofgraphics that express women as objects of desire are more compared tothose that capitalize on women. Therefore, gendered pornography isrampant in the online sites. The extent to which pornography goesabout the sexual orientation or sexual behavior also puts women onthe receiving end. During production, most women are lured intoreforming sexual acts in front of the camera and the compensationthey get subjects them to occasional brutality (Ogas &amp Gaddam,2011). As the theory suggests, it should not be thought that thenumber of women viewing pornography equal to the number of men. Mostof the pornographic sites visitors are men and therefore, they shouldnot overly emphasize on women sexuality. The abuse that people wouldwant to have women exposed to through unnatural or abusive sexpractices leads them to watch them on the internet where they wouldbe free from any reproach (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011).

Evolution psychologists use various tendencies in both males andfemales that determine their character and extent of theirpornographic behavior. As Ogas and Gaddam put it, evolution theoristsassert that males are graphically oriented since they highly utilizetheir sense of sight to gain sexual arousal (Ogas &amp Gaddam,2011). Therefore, they rank high in watching sex in action as well asviewing women images online. Females, on the other hand, prefernarratives full of romance to arouse their sexual feelings (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). The extent of their pornography inclines to romanticmovies and texts. Although they hit graphical pornographic sites,their number lags behind that of males. The society provides specificguidelines though unwritten to the extent of public sexual talk andexposure. The overlooked part of every sexual discussion is filledwhen people get a chance to explore it without having to face thesocial judgment (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011).

Various factors explain human approach to pornography. As Ogas andGoddam (2011) put it, the trends in society may instigate people toform the perception of what sex should look like (Ogas &amp Gaddam,2011). People may try to find the concealed scenarios behind sexstories and scenes from the pornographic sites. As a social factor,the issue of sex is not overly explained or expressed in the socialarena (Cooper et al., 2003). However, it does not mean that theyremain unexplored. Due to the social demarcations, that a societydraws as far as sex is concerned differences might appear to the typeof information that people seek from the pornographic sites. Theauthors give an example of MILF, a popular term in the western worldthat involves young men getting intimate with older women (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). Interestingly, the number of searches for MILF wasmore in the waste than in any other part of the world. Although thisdid not exempt the rest of the world from similar searches mostly dueto the exchange of information, the presence of the MILF discussionon the west could be termed a the primary instigating factor to thesearch (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011).

Biological factors also explain the character and extent ofpornography in human beings. As Ogas and Gaddam (2011) explain, thereexists a difference between males and females sexual brains (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). According to the authors, the male and female sexualcues are different. A single cue may arouse a male while a female mayrequire several cues to become aroused. The sexual cue in men formsduring adolescences and it rarely changes. In females, their sexualcues and tastes change several times in their life (Coopers et al.,2003). Therefore, while the male may prefer to watch physical, sexualactivities to get aroused, women require psychological stimulation.The extent of their sexual desires that are not satisfied in thesocial arena may be found by reading secretive erotic stories tostimulate them. Men might find these stories boring or tedious due totheir biological makeup (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). Anotherbiological phenomenon that explains the character an extent ofpornography is the biological makeup that renders some individuals“she-males.” That is, they harbor both the male and female sexualanatomy (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). While the transsexual individualsmight have female organs like the breasts, Ogas and Gaddam (2011)found out that most paid laid emphasis on the male organ, the penis.The combination of the curvaceous nature of a woman bearing a peniswas found to give sexual pleasure to many (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011).

Psychological factors like sexual orientation determine the characterand extent of pornography in individuals. Although many people areheterosexual, a significant number of homosexual individuals exist inthe population. There are unsatisfied sexual feelings in heterosexualthat they would only want to explore in the dark room (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). Ogas and Gaddam (2011) found out that on average, menwant to explore sexual escapades with plump women (Ogas &amp Gaddam,2011). The searches of men having sex with big women were, therefore,numerous. Their heterosexual orientation makes them watchheterosexual sexual actions mostly. Interestingly, Ogas and Gaddamfound out that homosexual men had almost similar sexual pleasures asheterosexual men. However, the searchers made by homosexual meninclined more to homosexual pornographic experiences than on theheterosexual pornography (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). Each of the grouphas a secret they want to explore behind the eyes of the socialjudgment.

From an evolutionary perspective, male and female have varied sourcesof sexual arousal. Evolutionary psychologists indicate that menprefer sexual graphics when they log into pornographic sites (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). On the contrary, women prefer to look for romanticstories that instigate their feelings to edge towards sexual arousal.As they develop, women exhibit changing sexual cues, unlike men.Evolutionary psychologists provide information that the sexual cuesthat male develop in their adolescence perpetuate to adulthood(Cooper et al., 2011). Women, on the other hand, may have differentsexual preferences in the different stages of their lives.

The pornographic behavior of males and females exhibits significantvariance in its extent and choice. The research conducted by Ogas andGaddam (2011) confirms that men visit pornographic sites more thanwomen do (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). The tendency may be explained bytheir evolutionary and biological difference. The fact that womenrequire several cues to arouse them sexually may make themnonfrequent visitors to graphical sites (Coopers et al., 2011). Theymight also take a considerable amount of time following an eroticstory. On the other hand, men can make several hits in a couple ofminutes since their sexual arousal highly inclines to their sense ofsight.

Theorists also use some forms of sexual orientation to explain thepornographic character of individuals. The extent to which anindividual views pornography and its type largely depend on theirsexual orientations (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). Heterosexualindividual mostly views images of the opposite sex or heterosexualactions. However, Ogas and Gaddam (2011) found out that homosexualmen have a similar choice of sexual content with heterosexual men(Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). Evolutionary psychologists indicate thatheterosexual men prefer wits to hip pornography. However, Ogas andGaddam questioned this theory since they did not find pornographicsites specifically for waist-hip images and videos (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011).

According to the research done by Ogas and Gaddam, evolutionarypsychologists explain the character and extent of pornography bylooking at the gender differences and sexual orientation. Althoughthe two researchers do not fault the theory used by evolutionists,they fail to find significant appeal in some of the claims (Ogas &ampGaddam, 2011). For example, they failed to link heterosexual males tothe preference from waist-hip pornographic images since there were nospecific sites to offer such images. However, they have been right inpointing out the gender difference observed in the extent andcharacter of pornography. Males prefer graphics while female preferserotic stories that influence their emotions.

Conclusively, the scientific research lays insights on variousaspects of human sexual desires. First, there are unsatisfied sexualdesires in the social arena that makes people turn to pornographicsites to experience them. Mostly, this happens in secrecy to avoidsocial judgment. Secondly, sexual desires between males and femalesdiffer, and this explains their character and extent concerningpornography. Males can get arousal from graphics while females drawsexual arousal from reading erotic stories or watching romanticmovies (Ogas &amp Gaddam, 2011). The extent of pornographic behavioris also under the influence of various factors including thebiological makeup, sexual orientation, and the social environment.Sexual desires dominate the lives of many people, but they preferexploring some of the dark room. Therefore, pornography will remainone of the subjects most searched on the internet.


Cooper, A. L.,Månsson, S. A., Daneback, K., Tikkanen, R., &amp Ross, M. (2003).Predicting the future of Internet sex: Online sexual activities inSweden. Sexual and Relationship Therapy, 18(3),277-291.

Ogas, O., &ampGaddam, S. (2011). A billion wicked thoughts: What the Internettells us about sexual relationships. Westminster: Penguin.