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Sexual SolipsismPhilosophical Essays on Pornography and Objectification$
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Rae Langton

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199247066

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199247066.001.0001

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Pornography's Authority? Response to Leslie Green

Pornography's Authority? Response to Leslie Green

Chapter:
(p.89) 4 Pornography's Authority? Response to Leslie Green
Source:
Sexual Solipsism
Author(s):

Rae Langton (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199247066.003.0005

Green's critique raises questions about social construction, and about the ‘jurisdiction’ of pornography's authority. Drawing on a comparison with speech that may subordinate gay men, he argues that pornography lacks the authority to subordinate, and even if had authority, it would not subordinate women: saying so would not make it so, and women would not be within the authority's jurisdiction. Authority depends on conditions of efficacy and legitimacy, absent for pornography. Green is mistaken. Pornography does have the relevant authority, and examination of its verdictive and exercitive dimensions sheds light on social construction: on how its saying so may, after all, make it so.

Keywords:   Green, social construction, authority, subordinate, efficacy, legitimacy, verdictive, exercitive

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