Does female-friendly porn exist?

KATHERINE FEENEY
Last updated 05:00 19/11/2011
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BABY STEPS: If you want to inject some spice into your sex life, why not begin with new lingerie and a bottle of champagne?

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OPINION: There are lovers and haters of porn. Some call it the literature of prostitution. Others regard it simply as sex stimuli.

What we can mostly agree on is the porn industry is dominated by product created for men. From mags to webcams and plastic-wrapped DVDs, there's a masculine thrust behind both the supply and demand side of this market.

What about women?

A couple of years ago I mulled over why there wasn't much out there for ladies. And blamed the supposition men were more visual than women for the yawning gap.

Since then there's been a lot of talk about porn; about the so-called pornification of society, how porn exploits women and creates addicts of men, and how porn and love are mutually exclusive terms.

But a careful comb through these sometimes hairy spreads reveals a few stories slightly different from the average. Tales of porn being made for women, by women. Visual material designed to arouse and excite sexual sensations, even if they are burdened by ovaries and a boob-full of oestrogen. XXX for the XX chromosome, and apparently there's a growing audience for it.

Just ask - if you could - a young man named James Deen. Star of many interesting editorials, and an impressive catalogue of porn films, some of which are 'fem-friendly'. A self-confessed nerdy Jewish dude, Deen's strength outside his nine inches is that he looks like a nice, normal guy. Which is a good thing - a lot of why I can't stand most main and free-stream pornography is due to the mean-beef looking blokes doing the banging (and mostly, it's very hardcore, actually kinda rapey banging; a bad thing).

Though not all of Deen's work is what I'd call fem-friendly. As he writes on his (not-suitable-for-work) blog, sometimes even James Deen has to "choke chicks".

At this juncture I'd like to make a distinction; there's pornography, and there's erotica. And I would suggest that erotica is more appealing. Not just to women, but in general. For very many reasons, including the less is more philosophy, and the seductive quality called restraint.

So to women looking to add a new dimension to their sex lives, I say try sexy literature, music, poetry, art, food, not porn. Tap material that is sexy not because of it is graphic and extreme, but because it's provocative and beautiful. Enjoy content that sees sex as a fun, pleasurable, powerful and passionate connection, not some slap, whack and squirt. Not because it's fem-friendly, but because it's just a little bit more civilised.

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Why not begin by ordering some champagne, oysters and a few of these films. And a fine set of French silk unmentionables...

But what do you think - is there a difference between porn and erotica? Do you think there's a difference between men and women when it comes to arousal? And have you any sexy recommendations of your own?

- Sydney Morning Herald

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