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Discrimination

Reasons for Pornography Consumption: Associations with Gender, Psychological and Physical Sexual Satisfaction, and Attitudinal Impacts

 

Open Access: No

Abstract

The purpose of this investigation is to examine the associations among gender and reasons for pornography consumption as well as attitudinal impacts. One hundred and forty-three participants, ranging in age from 18 to 48 (M = 21.22), participated in an online study at a large, southwestern university. Seventy-six of these participants identified as current consumers of pornography and are the primary focus of the analyses. Findings indicate that regardless of gender, pornography is preferably consumed in a solitary fashion for masturbatory purposes with a perceived positive physical, but not psychological, sexual satisfying impact for the self as well as for the consuming partner. Further, regarding attitudinal impacts, current male consumers of pornography report significantly higher adversarial sexual beliefs, rape myth acceptance and sexual conservatism than do current female consumers of pornography. Discussion and future directions follow.

 

Relevance

This study found that, compared to women, “men who currently consume pornography hold significantly higher adversarial beliefs” – “agreement with  the notions of women being sly and manipulative in relationships and men  positioning themselves as the stronger sex. Examples of items from this measure include, ‘Women are usually sweet until they’ve caught a man, but  then they let their true self show’ and, ‘A man’s got to show a woman who’s  boss or he’ll end up henpecked’.”

The study also found that men who consume pornography have “higher rape myth acceptance” – defined as “the attitude that a target of rape or sexual  assault was somehow fully or partly responsible for the act and  accountability for the perpetrator is reduced or removed.”

These men, too, had “higher sexually conservative beliefs.”

Moreover, individuals users “do not believe that they psychologically/emotionally benefit from pornography consumption.” Nor do they believe that their partners do so.

 

Citation

Emmers-Sommer, T. M. (2018). Reasons for Pornography Consumption: Associations with Gender, Psychological and Physical Sexual Satisfaction, and Attitudinal Impacts. Sexuality & Culture, 22, 48-62. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12119-017-9452-8