Why is Pornography Bad and Erotica Good?

Essay by kenshepardUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, May 2003

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"Lance slid his hands along her sides and behind her, pulling her against him, feeling her breasts warm and firm against his chest. She dropped her hands so she could pull his hips in tight. He smelled her, musky and warm, and when he pulled back to look at her he saw her eyes were half-closed, and he saw another sweat droplet glide down to the scoop of her tank top. Lance stooped slightly and caught it on the tip of his tongue, then retraced its path as far as her earlobe." Is this pornography or is it erotica. Literature has more than one definition for sexually explicit materials, erotica and pornography; erotica is acceptable and pornography is not. To be able to answer this question, a definition of pornography and erotica must be provided. Once it is decided that something is either erotica or pornography, the next question that needs to be answered is whether it should be censored.

There are many potential responses to the argument against the censorship of pornography and the acceptance of erotica. The United States common law distinguishes between offensive, indecent, and obscene speech. Offensive and indecent speeches have first amendment protection, but can be limited with a compelling government interest, as in the case of minors. However, obscene speech has no first amendment protections (Akdeniz 237). Pornography and erotica are found within sexually explicit books, magazines, photographs, and films. Is pornography classified as offensive, indecent, or obscene? The answer is yes and no. The classification and definition of pornography is as elusive as the leprechaun's pot of gold, and if you can get your hands around it, and everyone agrees that you have it, you would indeed have a great treasure. Before the question "Is pornography bad?" is answered, you will need to...