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Old 03-27-2012, 05:46 PM   #31
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:51 PM   #32
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For the women in the thread, I'd like to read what your definition(s) of porn is/are.
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:07 PM   #33
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I'll try... it's a difficult, slippery concept for me. To me, I think, porn is something that exists primarily for purient interest, for sexual stimulation.

yes, there are some sex scenes in romance, but they primarily exist to further the emotional arc, not to have somebody masturbate over.
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:09 PM   #34
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For the women in the thread, I'd like to read what your definition(s) of porn is/are.
I'm not sure why you care what "women" think but I would define porn as something that is produced and consumed purely for the sexual thrill. Do you not understand that there are many men that read romance also or do you just not care about their opinions?

Romance is not porn although a good portion of them do describe the sexual act as part of the story and they can be titillating. Romance is about the relationship.

I think some would classify literary erotica as porn, although many of them also straddle the line of relationship development.

But as stated, when you are using the term porn simply to label it in a derogatory manner, then the conversation ends as far as I'm concerned because I'm really not all that put off by persons exploring sexual acts through literature - Not even Twilight inspired BDSM. If you aren't open minded enough to accept that such a book can shoot to the top of a bestseller list, well that is your right to sit there in your closed little box.

And as much as anybody wants to belittle the romance genre or even erotica, the power of the sheer numbers of readers of the genre and the sheer number of romance genre books sold makes "that dumb stupid stuff that nobody with more than 4 brain cells would want to read" crap just looks ignorant.
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:24 PM   #35
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I'm not sure why you care what "women" think but I would define porn as something that is produced and consumed purely for the sexual thrill. Do you not understand that there are many men that read romance also or do you just not care about their opinions?

Romance is not porn although a good portion of them do describe the sexual act as part of the story and they can be titillating. Romance is about the relationship.

I think some would classify literary erotica as porn, although many of them also straddle the line of relationship development.

But as stated, when you are using the term porn simply to label it in a derogatory manner, then the conversation ends as far as I'm concerned because I'm really not all that put off by persons exploring sexual acts through literature - Not even Twilight inspired BDSM. If you aren't open minded enough to accept that such a book can shoot to the top of a bestseller list, well that is your right to sit there in your closed little box.

And as much as anybody wants to belittle the romance genre or even erotica, the power of the sheer numbers of readers of the genre and the sheer number of romance genre books sold makes "that dumb stupid stuff that nobody with more than 4 brain cells would want to read" crap just looks ignorant.
Let me start by stating that I unequivocably agree with pretty much everything you say. Yes, romance is an established, popular and valid literary genre and is clearly different to porn.

My only beef is with the argument in your final sentence. The equating of popular with good is just wrong. The most popular newspapers are not the best; by that logic, Dan Brown is one of the best modern writers and the best TV programs are all soaps and reality shows. You are correct, I just think your method of argument is flawed
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:26 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by murraypaul View Post
Car porn: http://carporn.co.uk/
Food porn: http://foodporndaily.com/
All completely safe for work.
Seriously... I really appreciate those links. Who doesn't love good food and classic cars?


But my issue with Jon's statements are numerous. Romance is simply not porn. And it was clear by his earlier statement - asking how "desperate" women were - that he was being derogatory.

I know what he was trying to say while he was back-pedaling...but still, romance is not porn, no matter how you stretch it.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:27 PM   #37
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I'm not sure why you care what "women" think but I would define porn as something that is produced and consumed purely for the sexual thrill. Do you not understand that there are many men that read romance also or do you just not care about their opinions?

Romance is not porn although a good portion of them do describe the sexual act as part of the story and they can be titillating. Romance is about the relationship.

I think some would classify literary erotica as porn, although many of them also straddle the line of relationship development.

But as stated, when you are using the term porn simply to label it in a derogatory manner, then the conversation ends as far as I'm concerned because I'm really not all that put off by persons exploring sexual acts through literature - Not even Twilight inspired BDSM. If you aren't open minded enough to accept that such a book can shoot to the top of a bestseller list, well that is your right to sit there in your closed little box.

And as much as anybody wants to belittle the romance genre or even erotica, the power of the sheer numbers of readers of the genre and the sheer number of romance genre books sold makes "that dumb stupid stuff that nobody with more than 4 brain cells would want to read" crap just looks ignorant.
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:02 PM   #38
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My only beef is with the argument in your final sentence. The equating of popular with good is just wrong. The most popular newspapers are not the best; by that logic, Dan Brown is one of the best modern writers and the best TV programs are all soaps and reality shows. You are correct, I just think your method of argument is flawed
Have you read any romance? I'll stack up some of Nora Robert's best against some of the better mysteries or SF out there. She's brilliant at writing friendships and family relationships. some of her plotting (not all, of course) is as rich and intricate as they come (I highly recommend Blue Smoke and Northern Lights to any male who wants to try them).

Not all romance is great stuff - some of it is drek (what's Sturgeons' Law again? 90% of everything is drek?). A lot of "historicals" bear only the sketchiest resemblance to real history. but romance readers, are, by and large, fairly picky in that even if the history doesn't ring true, the relationship arc has to ring true, to be satisfying. Just a happy ending isn't enough... there has to be some belief, garnered from characterization and dialog, that the main characters deserve each other, that they have a chance of being happy together.

I've read SF where the "willing suspension of belief" means suspended by the neck until dead. I've read mysteries where the mystery was solved by a deus ex machina, and not always believable ones. But any romance that doesn't have a *satisfying* ending will hit the wall just as hard.

And no romance has yet left me feeling like I should just slit my wrists. (see the thread on whether modern sf is too pessimistic.)
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:09 PM   #39
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Have you read any romance? I'll stack up some of Nora Robert's best against some of the better mysteries or SF out there. She's brilliant at writing friendships and family relationships. some of her plotting (not all, of course) is as rich and intricate as they come (I highly recommend Blue Smoke and Northern Lights to any male who wants to try them).

Not all romance is great stuff - some of it is drek (what's Sturgeons' Law again? 90% of everything is drek?). A lot of "historicals" bear only the sketchiest resemblance to real history. but romance readers, are, by and large, fairly picky in that even if the history doesn't ring true, the relationship arc has to ring true, to be satisfying. Just a happy ending isn't enough... there has to be some belief, garnered from characterization and dialog, that the main characters deserve each other, that they have a chance of being happy together.

I've read SF where the "willing suspension of belief" means suspended by the neck until dead. I've read mysteries where the mystery was solved by a deus ex machina, and not always believable ones. But any romance that doesn't have a *satisfying* ending will hit the wall just as hard.

And no romance has yet left me feeling like I should just slit my wrists. (see the thread on whether modern sf is too pessimistic.)
Exactly! That's why I LOVE Everything I Know About Love I Learned from Romance Novels. She discusses the myriad reasons that people (note: people, not just women) read romances.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:02 PM   #40
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The problem with trying to define "porn" is it ends up being one of those "I know it when I see it" things.

It's clear that romance as a literary genre is not porn. There are plenty of romances that have no sex, or no explicit sex in them. And there are certainly also romances that edge right up against the border with erotica and give it a little nudge. However, romance is primarily the story of a developing romantic relationship, and not primarily written for titillation (no matter about those romances you check out from the library that fall open to the sex scenes and for some reason you don't want to *touch* them after that...). Porn (or, in the written world, erotica) is something created primarily for titillation.

I think it's more accurate to say that some romance themes reflect broader, usually-female emotional fantasies (such as a Cinderella story, the fulfillment of fertility and sexuality in marriage, etc.) than calling it "porn for women", which is derogatory toward women; but these are not the only themes, nor the only reason people read romances.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:07 PM   #41
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The problem with trying to define "porn" is it ends up being one of those "I know it when I see it" things.

It's clear that romance as a literary genre is not porn. There are plenty of romances that have no sex, or no explicit sex in them. And there are certainly also romances that edge right up against the border with erotica and give it a little nudge. However, romance is primarily the story of a developing romantic relationship, and not primarily written for titillation (no matter about those romances you check out from the library that fall open to the sex scenes and for some reason you don't want to *touch* them after that...). Porn (or, in the written world, erotica) is something created primarily for titillation.

I think it's more accurate to say that some romance themes reflect broader, usually-female emotional fantasies (such as a Cinderella story, the fulfillment of fertility and sexuality in marriage, etc.) than calling it "porn for women", which is derogatory toward women; but these are not the only themes, nor the only reason people read romances.
I agree.
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Old 03-28-2012, 12:56 PM   #42
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(crickets)

I think we may have proved our point... or at least scared off the opposition.
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Old 03-28-2012, 03:18 PM   #43
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Hopefully everyone is busy chanting "Romance is not porn, romance is not porn..."
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:10 PM   #44
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Exactly.
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:16 PM   #45
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Car porn: http://carporn.co.uk/
Food porn: http://foodporndaily.com/
All completely safe for work.
I just want to say...

It is totally NOT RIGHT for you to give me that food url.

I find myself staring at those pics when I should be working. *sigh*
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