Erotica and Porn

One of the comments that the author makes in the “Down and Dirty” book is that she uses the terms erotica and pornography interchangeably. She is quite frankly bored with the argument regarding the differences between the two.

Now the fact that she easily uses one term or another implies to me that she doesn’t believe that there is a difference between the two concepts. On that point, I quite vehemently disagree with her.

I suspect that the standard colloquial view of pornography is that it is simply some form of visual stimulation focussed on intercourse. Perhaps the more soft-core examples of this are termed “erotica” and the more hard-core versions are viewed as the real “porn.”

I know that when I browse the erotica section of the PPV menu on my TV, I can scarcely tell the difference between the titles of “erotica” vs “adult.” According to my cable provider, the difference between the two appears to be the price tag.

Can you tell me, darling readers, what the obvious difference in genres is between titles such as “Carnal Lust” and “Date with a Porn Star” vs “Brazilian Sex Island” and “Really Deep Throats.” I’m curious to know which of you would guess correctly which title belongs in which category.

Now when actually viewing the two genres, the difference is as basic as soft and hard core. “Erotica” films are less varied, more tentative and only shows a limited amount of skin. Whereas with “porn” or “adult” films, there seem to be no limitations at all. The viewer experiences full-on, raunchy skin and thrusting. It’s much more…stimulating, and impossible to fake.

I imagine the same may hold true for the written version of the same categories. More “romance” and an attempt at a storyline in erotica, vs the more carnal limited scope of porn.

However, in my mind, this is all simply theory. The differences I’ve described above are what I’ve observed from society. It’s not how I really feel on the matter. What is outlined above is a watered down version of the truth. A truth that I believe is much more stark.

To me, soft-core, hard-core, it’s all erotica as long as there is the element of willing consent. Whether that consent is masked by apparent refusals or not. If both partners are willing participants in the event – no matter how kinky or painful- that is erotica.

Pornography? Is degrading. Is damaging. Is demeaning and unhealthy. I suspect by it’s very definition, porn is at it’s core a negative concept. Think of all the legal associations with it.

And erotica? That is a beautiful form of sensual expression in all its forms.

To use the terms interchangeably I find to be both ridiculous and insulting to this beautiful community that I have become a part of.

I would genuinely like to hear your thoughts on the matter.