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Pornified: How Pornography Is Transforming Our Lives, Our Relationships, and Our Families

3.55  ·  Rating Details ·  425 Ratings  ·  74 Reviews
"Strips porn of its culture-war claptrap . . . Pornified may stand as a Kinsey Report for our time."—San Francisco Chronicle

Porn in America is everywhere—not just in cybersex and Playboy but in popular video games, advice columns, and reality television shows, and on the bestseller lists. Even more striking, as porn has become affordable, accessible, and anonymous, it has
ebook, 320 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Times Books (first published August 11th 2005)
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(showing 1-30)
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Aug 28, 2007 Lost_Clown rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in pornography
Shelves: feminist, nonfiction
I felt that this was a great book about how pornography is affecting all of our lives. The stories are told from the men who use pornography and from the women who date these men or have dated these types of men. She does not follow the radical feminist line nor does she follow the conservative line. She is very fair and balanced and lets the porn users own words paint the picture of how pornography is influencing and changing how we react to one another.

Great book for anyone interested in why p
There were some interesting anecdotes, and I certainly know more about the porn industry - specifically online - than I did before. But it was repetitive and seemed to lack a focus or even a thesis beyond "porn affects relationships". Well, yeah.
i am only into the third chapter and i feel kind of overwhelmed -- pamela paul is very clear and fairly simplistic in her writing style which makes her easy to understand, but somewhat redundant. she tosses a lot of figures around: according to one poll, this, and according to another poll, that. and according to her own interviews, something similar, but not exact. what is really fascinating are her interviews and her transcriptions of porn chat-room conversations. in the interviews, men (and s ...more
Mar 13, 2008 Joel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction

Much-needed, almost academic look at the deleterious effects of the onslaught of porn in today's society. The author, relying heavily on surveys and interviews, illustrates how porn destroys relationships and debases the culture. Good examination of a relatively unspoken problem. Debunks the myth that porn is harmless.

Not the easiest of reads (lots of percentages and repetitive quotes from surveys), but certainly worthwhile.
Mar 29, 2008 Suzanne rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I started reading this book because it had some fresh research on the detrimental effects of pornography. I am so against pornography on both religious and feminist grounds. But this book had some good answers to the libertarian free-speech type defenders of pornography. However, I was not able to stomach the book. I stopped early and don't plan to finish reading it. The message is good. But in describing what is wrong with pornography, she sometimes described pornography in more graphic ways th ...more
Jun 05, 2008 Isaac rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good book about a subject that the author points out really has no middle ground in terms of criticism. "You're either Larry Flint or Andrea Dworkin" is the quote. I think it's on about the same plane as smoking: pleasurable but with diminishing returns in proportion to the amount of time you spend on it, which usually ends up increasing bit by bit. Not a great evil as some people imagine but not much of a good either. I know I spend too much time watching it when I could be doing so m ...more
May 17, 2009 Jenni rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: soc-psych-phil
I knew going into this that the author probably comes from a different political viewpoint than I do. I expected to completely disagree with every last item in Pornified, but on the contrary, there was actually a lot where I could understand her viewpoint and agree with her even. Pamela Paul makes some very valid points and has several pieces of research to support her ideas. However, I also felt that Paul makes a lot of assumptions and takes some of her thoughts to the extreme. Early on, she ex ...more
Nov 30, 2008 Casandra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everybody
This book brought to my attention the truly horrific and real consequences of a pornified society. I had never really understood the consequences that others' porn habits had on my life.

The discussion about porn is often sidelined with a larger discussion of sex, god, and religious views, but this book did a great job of avoiding those pitfalls. Regardless of what your views are about sex, this book gives you a sense of the societal consequences of pornography.

I recommend it to everybody. But I
While I liked this book generally, and the ideas that it espoused with what was obviously not a little research, I had to take about a two-week break from it halfway through because it was seriously depressing me. I'm almost twenty-eight years old, and according to Pamela Paul's research, I can expect the men in my age group to be addicted to porn to such a degree that it will ruin both relationships and mens' expectations of my looks and behavior, and not to mention ruin their idea of me as a h ...more
Jun 08, 2009 Heather rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Heather by: Casandra
This is a very enlightening book. It will leave you dismayed and worried for the future of our boys.

I went into Pornified with the opinion that looking at pornography is an itch that men sometimes need to scratch. I believed it was something that should be controlled and never indulged. But that it is just one of those things that "happens" now and again. I also believed that women who got hysterical over it were being unreasonable and needlessly dramatic.

Reading this book changed my mind a lot
Mar 15, 2009 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book over a year ago. It is written by a journalist who started out with a completely objective attitude about pornography and who discovered that it is highly-addictive and that it has become pervasive and accepted in many aspects of our culture. She shares many case studies that convince the readers that we need to be more vigilant, educated, and aware of the dangers of pornography addiction--and its consequences--in our homes, neighborhoods, communities, and country. It reminds us ...more
Skylar Burris
This book is written by a female journalist who did not initially have much of a problem with pornography, but whose research brought her to question if we have allowed our society to become far too “pornified” and what kind of action we can take to at least stem the tide. The book is subtitled “How pornography is transforming our lives, relationships, and families,” but I don't think she spends enough time discussing those things; there’s a great deal of time spent discussing how much pornograp ...more
Sep 16, 2009 Alicia rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
If you are looking for a one-sided review of the effect of pornography then this is your book. While the author had the capability to utilize primary research , the interviews were scattered only to make specific points. Questions were loaded, and particpant backgrounds were used to discredit sources in opposition to the author's viewpoint. A disappointing attempt to discredit liberal viewpoints on pornography. Instead it is mired down in sensaitionalism and cover up much like the media today.
John Kennedy
Nov 18, 2009 John Kennedy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recently in doing some research for an article, I read Pamela Paul’s Pornified: How Pornography Is Transforming Our Lives, Our Relationships and Our Families. The book is four years old and the situation has grown much worse, but it points out how devalued and objectified women are now because of the sex industry.

The media exploits women everywhere: in fashion magazines, television programs, billboards, social networking sites, motion pictures, music videos. But the chief factor in accelerating
Jan 07, 2010 Lauren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was very interesting. Considering that I consider myself a super liberal, a lot of the things said in the book make sense to me. There is a vast difference between some of the porn that I myself have even viewed and real, true, intimate sex. This book doesn't cater to the religious right, as I believed that it might. It provides reasonable and rational arguments for certain "conservative" ideas that I never thought I would agree with. I think it's hysterical it mentions the Suicide Gir ...more
May 19, 2010 Peacegal rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book after having a discussion about the subject with my significant other. I have difficulty understanding the appeal of pornography, and I figured this book may give me some insight to this multibillion dollar industry.

The beginning of the book did a very good job of explaining what men seem unwilling or incapable of doing: just what exactly is the appeal of viewing these images and videos. The author also correctly points out that pornography is no longer a musty stack of ma
Ted N.
May 31, 2010 Ted N. rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: social-sciences
I was hoping to read about the effects of pornography, even among those that may not realize they've been influenced. What she chose to write about, instead, is the relatively small portion of society that has become hopelessly addicted to pornography. It's full of stories about people who are horribly addicted, but no stories about people that don't view porn at all. She wrote about a statistically very small portion of society.
Jul 12, 2010 Bullet rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: feminist
This was an eye-opener. I was unaware of the prevalence of "hard core" pornography so readily available now, and this had very little opinion on the subject. Although this is probably classified in women's studies or feminism, I thought that it was as unbiased as possible, since it consisted mainly of interviews from people- mostly male porn addicts.
I'm really disturbed by the material in this book and I agree that things need to change in the way we view sex in order for women (and men) to mov
Books Ring Mah Bell
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Mar 02, 2012 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is chalk-full of statistics, studies, polls, and more information than you'd ever imagine on the world and business of Pornography and our changing society. Although I had done research through University on the subject of Pornography, rape, degradation of women, women's roles and depiction in society, the information was still shocking and depressing to me. Unfortunately, due to the sheer amount of statistics and interviews loaded into one book, I don't think it is accessible to much ...more
Apr 12, 2012 Daniel rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I understand that pornography is a controversial subject. As someone who considers himself liberal when it comes to internet censorship and pornography, I must state that I did not let my personal beliefs bear any effect on me while reading this book. In fact, I was looking for a well-articulated, clear, succinct opposing argument in this book. Instead, the author presents a few couples' situations and dealings with pornography. While it is entirely possible for a person to become addicted and l ...more
May 24, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting book, and it accurately depicts what's out there and what people (usually men) can get themselves into. But I was looking for a more comprehensive study of how the sexual revolution, and the current trends toward accepting more and more extreme and disconnected forms of sexual expression have affected society as a WHOLE, rather than individual people. The book jacket was a bit misleading in that sense. Individuals have obsessions and mentalities that feed right into the a ...more
Kim Winters
Sep 27, 2012 Kim Winters rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would give this book more stars, but due to the subject matter it is very graphic and so I can't recommend wholeheartedly to everyone I know. Still, for those who want to understand porn and what it is actually doing to real humans, this book is for you. Paul does an excellent job of giving us a sincere distaste for our porn culture and its contributing factors by sounding an alarm without being "preachy." Her writing style definitely fit the way I read - and by the end of the book I really li ...more
May 31, 2013 Po-Tau rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even before reading this book, it has been my view that unlimited freedom of anything contradicts with the very idea of a healthy society. Pamela Paul presents a persuasive argument to the same - pornography isn't about freedom of speech or equality of the sexes, most of the time the very opposite is true. Chapter 6 of this book should convince any sensible adult that some form of restriction is called for, not the least because the well-being of our children is at stake. I was going to go on a ...more
Oct 05, 2013 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: feminism, ethics
This book is further evidence that feminists can't decide what they think about porn. According to this author, sure sex is fun and doesn't have to be linked to procreation and marriage, but she still finds our porn culture horrific. She tries to give a variety of reasons--distorted views about what "normal" sex looks like, distorted ideas about women and what pleases them, relationship and marriage troubles, etc. I think I would find these to be genuine problems had the author bothered to give ...more
Matt Fimbulwinter
Mar 22, 2014 Matt Fimbulwinter rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: feminism, sexuality
I worry at times that my non-fiction reading is an echo chamber where I just read books that reinforce my pre-existing biases. So, I figured I'd read something I expected to disagree with - Pamela Paul's Pornified - and later read Anne G. Sabo's retort in After Pornified. I have come to regret this decision.

Pornified is the Reefer Madness of sexuality books. I thought I'd be getting updated 2nd wave radical feminist arguments against porn. What I got was disingenuous and surprising avoidance of
Петър Стойков
Книга за порнографията и как тя вреди на живота и психиката на хората. Писана от жена.

Извинявайте, но жените не гледат порно. Не и както мъжете. Не ми разправяйте за равнопоставеност на половете и други такива. Женското отношение към порното изобщо няма нищо общо с това на мъжете. Жени, просто няма как да го разберете сега, сори. Това е едно от тия неща, които са дълбоко свързани с може би най-голямото еволюционно различие между двата пола. Ако искате да узнаете повече за него, ето една чудесна
Another balanced take by my favorite book editor Pamela Paul, this work from when she was at Time. Here she has a definite opinion but not without a careful look and a clear description of the prevalence as well as consequences - and she does it without seeming judgmental.
Ben Hinson
Pamela Paul tackles the effects of pornography in her book. It's a good insightful read, that will mean something different for each reader based on their value system and stage in life. The book goes into detail regarding the negative effects excessive use of pornography has on marriages, on relationships, on perception (how women view themselves/self esteem and how men view women/objectification/expectations) and so on. And many of the points are backed by interviews and studies. I do agree th ...more
I was drawn in by the first part of the book, which looks deep into exactly why men are attracted to pornography, and provides a nice cross section of anonymous interviews to flavor the text and add texture to the statistics.

The latter half stops citing as many studies and takes a sharp turn towards the author's conclusion. I felt a bit robbed that we didn't delve into studies surrounding pornography's effects on marriages and families in more depth - there was some coverage, but not nearly as i
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Pamela Paul is the editor of The New York Times Book Review and the author of Parenting, Inc., Pornified, and The Starter Marriage and the Future of Matrimony. Prior to joining the Times, Paul was a contributor to Time magazine and The Economist, and her work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and Vogue. She and her family live in New York.
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