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April 18, 2013


College Offers Course Devoted Entirely to Pornography

Checked your kid’s college schedule lately? 

“(The course) focuses on giving students tools to understand pornography as a historical and contemporary phenomenon,” Schwyzer told The College Fix. “Students today live in a porn-saturated culture and very rarely get a chance to learn about it in a safe, non-judgmental, intellectually thoughtful way.”

The course doesn’t merely consist of viewing pornography. In fact, students do not view porn inside the classroom. Instead, they watch it on their own time as homework. Assignments include journals, a research paper, and a final exam, Schwyzer explained.

Schwyzer, professor of history and gender studies at the Southern California-based community college, said the elective provides students an avenue to discuss pornography in an academic setting.

 


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12 comments

The mind boggles, yet I am not surprised…

The only “surprise” I see is where the professor says this is an opportunity to look at pornography in a “non-judgmental” way.  Isn’t it already in the larger society?  You’re more apt to be judged if you don’t look at it.

[1] Posted by Reformed Wanderer on 4-18-2013 at 07:14 AM · [top]

While the study of its history, its societal, and psychological impacts, is probably important given the recent development of the internet and easier access to pornography, I am not quite sure about those homework assignments.

[2] Posted by Undergroundpewster on 4-18-2013 at 08:29 AM · [top]

Californians.  Are they proud of this use of their tax dollars?  Some of them are.

[3] Posted by Katherine on 4-18-2013 at 11:20 AM · [top]

I would call this a “bonehead” course ......or something akin to that.

[4] Posted by Fr. Dale on 4-18-2013 at 12:10 PM · [top]

I actually think that studying pornography can be useful at the University, but the “homework assignments” are terribly irresponsible.  Universities may have graduate courses in toxins and/or lethal bacteria, but can you imagine Food Science course telling people to set potato salad outside on a hot day and then consume the results and see what happens?

Our culture is naively gnostic.  We think that we are incapable of being hurt, except with physical matters.  So, no, exposing people to lethal toxins is forbidden, but exposing people to (also lethal) pornography supposedly won’t hurt anyone.  No, we are not immune.

1 Corinthians 10:12

[5] Posted by John Boyland on 4-18-2013 at 12:44 PM · [top]

#5. John Boyland,
“I actually think that studying pornography can be useful at the University” Would you mind unpacking that statement? In what respect would it be useful?

[6] Posted by Fr. Dale on 4-18-2013 at 01:03 PM · [top]

#6 Pamela Paul wrote “Pornified: How Pornography is damaging our lives”.  This is a study of pornography.  Pornography is all over the internet and has a profound (and baleful) influence on our lives.  You betcha it should be studied, just like we study salmonella.  But no, don’t give homework assignments to consume it, any more than we give homework assignments to consume salmonella.

[7] Posted by John Boyland on 4-18-2013 at 01:12 PM · [top]

John Boyland,
I think you mean to say that pornography should be researched in universities not offered as curriculum to undergraduate students.

[8] Posted by Fr. Dale on 4-18-2013 at 02:04 PM · [top]

Fr. Dale #8, I beg to differ.  As an academic, I think academic subjects fit for research can also be fit for teaching.  I think one could make a responsible undergraduate course studying pornography.  It would be difficult but not impossible.  The topic is certainly important.  (And as I said before #5 and #7—the course profiled in this posting is far from being responsible in its handling of dangerous material.)

Lusty undergrads taking such a hypothetical responsible pornography course would be disappointed, as some were in the undergraduate course I took at U C Davis on “Viticulture and Enology” (Winemaking) in which not a single drop of wine was made or consumed by the students.

[9] Posted by John Boyland on 4-18-2013 at 02:35 PM · [top]

I suppose we can only hope that this wonderful course on pornography will also study the potentially very harmful effects of pornography as it proceeds in a “safe, non-judgmental, intellectually thoughtful way.”  One would think that would be assumed, but I don’t think that’s a safe assumption anymore.

[10] Posted by ADaniel on 4-18-2013 at 03:32 PM · [top]

John Boyland,
“As an academic, I think academic subjects fit for research can also be fit for teaching.” I think you are dancing around on this. As a psychologist and a priest, I would never, ever, teach a course on pornography. I would not intentionally expose myself or anyone else to this evil and I do mean evil gateway to personal bondage and addiction. Will you have students sign a release form against suing you down the road for what may happen to their lives?

[11] Posted by Fr. Dale on 4-18-2013 at 03:49 PM · [top]

Fr. Dale,
I explicitly said a responsible course should not expose students to pornography in the same way that a food microbiology course shouldn’t have students eat tainted potato salad.  I completely and whole-heartedly agree with you on the evils of pornography.

[12] Posted by John Boyland on 4-20-2013 at 10:08 PM · [top]

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