Porn is Complicated

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There’s been a lot of thoughtful criticism on porn, written by women, recently—notably, Katrina Forrester in the New Yorker and Natasha Lennard in The Nation. For Granta, Andrea Stuart choses a unique angle in her own piece on porn, writing a genre-bending essay that can best be described as a reported piece of first-person criticism. After positioning herself in the feminist “porn wars” with descriptors like “sex positive” and “third wave feminist,” Stuart’s feelings grow to be more complicated, and Marxist. “A woman can only be sexually free,” she writes, “if she is also in control of the means of production;” something that rarely occurs in the industry nowadays.


Sam Metz is a writer living in Morocco on a Fulbright. His reporting and criticism has appeared or is forthcoming in The Nation, Public Books, Lit Hub and Muftah. He formerly worked on the editorial team at The Nation. More from this author →