Taormino speaks about feminist pornography
Taormino, a self-identified feminist pornographer, sex educator and “anal sexpert,” titled her talk “My Life as a Feminist Pornographer,” and explained that the motivation behind her first and subsequent films distinguished her from other pornographers.
“I wanted the movie to be inspiring. I wanted it to be educational, smart, hot and for women — everything the industry was not about,” Taormino said. “I wanted to prove that the rhetoric — that porn was made by and for men — is completely wrong.”
The USG Project Board’s grant of $1,500 two months ago to fund the event incited campus controversy. Many student groups expressed concern over the viewing of such explicit media on campus, resulting in a petition circulated by the Anscombe Society protesting the event.
Dan Maselli ’11 — who attended Pamela Paul’s talk “Why Porn Is Anti-Sex” on April 8, which was also organized by Let’s Talk Sex — said that he was interested in seeing the speakers’ conflicting opinions and how the speaker would address students’ questions. Paul’s lecture was intended to complement the views expressed in Taormino’s talk, LeTS president Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux ’11 told The Daily Princetonian on March 10.
“Pamela Paul made a strong argument for why porn is bad for sex and men, and we were interested to see what the speaker would say in response,” Molly Slotznick ’10 said.
Taormino’s involvement with feminist pornography began with her book “Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women” in 1998. Following the book’s publication, she taught workshops and later decided to produce a film to promote the contents of the book.
Taormino said she intended for the audience to relate to and empathize with the actors in her films.
Taormino noted, “Some people hold the opinion that sex is not valued in our culture, that making this as a product is not valuable, and that people who do it are not valuable workers.”
But, Taormino added, her work is different.
“I want to make films that empower people who are making it and people who are watching it,” asserted Taormino, “and I know that I can change the world, one feminist video at a time.”