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Jan 28 2012

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RESEARCH: How Porn Fuels ‘Collective Anxiety’ Among Men

By DONNA NEBENZAHL, Freelance January 28, 2012
 
Concordia sociology student Casey Scheibling is looking at "how pornography consumers make sense of their own masculinity."
 
Concordia sociology student Casey Scheibling is looking at “how pornography consumers make sense of their own masculinity.”
 
Photograph by: DAVE SIDAWAY THE GAZETTE, Freelance
 There’s more to pornography than how it sexualizes or demeans women, says Casey Scheibling, an honours sociology student at Concordia University.”Most of the literature on pornography tends to focus on women, and that leaves out half of the people involved.”

How, he wonders, do the portrayals of men in pornography influence body and genital satisfaction among male viewers? “I’m not talking about men’s addiction to pornography,” says Scheibling, 23. “I’m more interested in the studies on how pornography consumers make sense of their own masculinity.”

Scheibling’s research will examine the relationship between habitual or chronic porn consumption and excessive body dissatisfaction, says his adviser Marc Lafrance, because the men featured in heterosexual porn – the subject of the study – are buff males who perform on demand in a highly mechanized way. “Is this sort of porn consumption among extraordinary numbers of young men creating expectations around their own bodies that are difficult to approximate?”

Part and parcel of the crisis of masculinity is the kind of collective anxiety men are now suffering about their bodies and their sexual potency, says Lafrance, who also teaches a master’s level course titled the Sociology of the Body.

“There’s a link to be made between this so-called crisis of masculinity . and the extraordinary proliferation of erectile dysfunction products, the rise of body building and cosmetic surgery, the high-energy drinks – and let’s throw in for the good measure the boom in grooming products,” he says.

“All of these suggest in my view an increased preoccupation with male bodies in which they’re all trying to increase the maleness of the male.

“Pec implants, calf implants, penile enhancement – these are very aligned with that hegemonic or hyper masculinity.

“Just as all those female products speak to women’s insecurity,” Lafrance says, “these are tapping into a growing anxiety around masculinity and an alpha male ideal.”

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette
 

Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/porn+fuels+collective+anxiety/6065638/story.html#ixzz1kn2by1W6

 

Permanent link to this article: http://porninthevalley.com/2012/01/28/research-how-porn-fuels-collective-anxiety-among-men/

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