Film, Art, and Pornography

  • Jacob M. Held


This chapter rehearses the historical discourse over pornography with the intent of orienting the reader to the discourse and motivating a more constructive approach to dealing with pornography. Topics covered include pornography and obscenity law in the context of First Amendment protections to freedom of speech, pornography as harmful, including the arguments that pornography causes sexual violence or foments discrimination, the value of pornography, and whether pornography in general, and pornographic films in particular are art. The overall approach to this chapter is exploratory and the conclusions offered are tentative. The goal of this piece is simply to motivate a more robust understanding of pornography, its place in society, and its place in the artworld.


Pornography Obscenity First amendment Free speech Explicit Arousal Spectacle Sex Art Film Genre 

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacob M. Held
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Central ArkansasConwayUSA

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