Feminist Conversations is a regular feature at Feminists for Choice, in which we spotlight activists. After reading Meagan Tyler’s book Selling Sex Short: The Pornographic and Sexological Construction of Women’s Sexuality in the West, and not being able to put it down, I had to ask her a few questions.
You have written extensively about pornography, the sex industry, and the construction of women’s sexuality. How did this interest come about?
Looking back now, it seems rather an odd thing to have chosen to research! What really got me interested was teaching in high-schools in my home town of Melbourne. Most schools in Australia have uniforms and on the few “free dress” days a year, students often want to wear their most coveted pieces of clothing. All the way back in 2004, I noticed a growing number of 12 and 13 year old girls wearing Playboy branded t-shirts, which seemed like a new phenomenon. I wanted to know about the marketing operations that were going on with companies like Playboy and if they were consciously “mainstreaming” their brands. So I went back to uni to do a PhD.
What was your motivation for writing Selling Sex Short? [Read more...]