Philosophy Faculty Publications


From Jekyll to Hyde: The Grooming of Male Pornography Consumers

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Publication Source

Everyday Pornography


Robert Jensen has observed that "the danger of pornography is heightened exactly because it is only one part of a sexist system and because the message it carries about sexuality is reinforced elsewhere" (2007a: 103).

In a culture that normalizes male sexual aggression against females in a variety of contexts, the typical consumer is pre-groomed to accept such aggression before he ever begins using pornography. In this article, I argue that many pornography consumers undergo further and more specific grooming as they acclimate to rougher and more openly sadistic materials. This grooming is a co-operative effort involving both the industry and the individual consumer. Both, after all, have something important at stake: for the industry, continued profits; and for the consumer, an important way in which he has come to experience sexual pleasure.

In this cooperative grooming process, I will contend, the male porn user becomes both abuser and abused, consumer and consumed.

Inclusive pages





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Taylor and Francis

Place of Publication

Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom