Pornography and empathy are not a good combination

February 9, 2007 at 2:18 am 1 comment

I don’t want to share with you more than you’d want to know about me, but I’m going to anyway.

I look at pornography. It’s one of the few moderately enjoyable things I have left. In my defense, though I’m not actually sure I need to defend myself here, I prefer pictures of women who look real. ‘Perfection’ is plastic and boring. I tend to find people attractive based on their face more than their body. And I prefer to see people who actually look happy to be doing what they’re doing, although given my previously mentioned bdsm leanings, this may not always translate to ‘smiling’ all the time.

I’m aware though, that pornography can often be a rather sordid business, and while there are models who freely choose and completely enjoy what they do, there’s also girls who are there because of unfortunate circumstances and whose naivety is used by the predominantly male owners of the business. However, like most men, I think, I have the ability to completely turn any sense of empathy off while looking at pornography.

Either my lack of empathy seems to be failing me recently, or I’m going mad. OK, madder.

Take a look at this girl. I’ve cropped the picture to just the face, although the full version is nothing you couldn’t see in a newspaper. Well, some newspapers anyway.

Model who may be just about to burst into tears.

Simple question: Does she look as if she’s just about to burst into tears or what?

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Tom Dandy  |  February 9, 2007 at 7:20 pm

    “I tend to find people attractive based on their face more than their body.”

    That makes two of us.

    “Does she look as if she’s just about to burst into tears or what?”

    I think it’s hard to tell here. One would really have to see the whole series in order to get a solid guess at what she’s really thinking. Many snapshots are taken in-between emotions; I think that can confuse a person who’s trying to interpret the expression on someone’s face via photograph.

    Her face could mean almost anything in this picture.
    But sadness is certainly viable here.
    I’ve been meaning to look into the Facial Action Coding System (FACS).
    Check it out sometime when you’re bored.

    -Tom Dandy

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Hi, I'm James. I'm a 26 year old guy from England with bipolar disorder (currently well controlled). I also have a circadian rhythm sleep disorder (not so well controlled). This blog has charted my journey from mental illness, through diagnosis and, recently, into recovery. It's not always easy, but then, what is?

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As of 12th September 2008 it has been forty five weeks since I quit smoking. So in another seven weeks it'll have been a whole year.

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