Daily Archives: Friday 8 February 2008

Friday Feminist – Andrea Dworkin

The word pornography, derived from the ancient Greek porne and graphos, means ‘writing about whores’. Porne means ‘whore’, specifically and exclusively the lowest class of whore, which in ancient Greece was the brothel slut available to all male citizens. The porne was the cheapest (in the literal sense), least regarded, least protected of all women, including slaves. She was, simply and clearly and absolutely, a sexual slave. Graphos means ‘writing, etching or drawing’.

The word pornography does not mean ‘writing about sex’ or ‘depictions of the erotic’ or ‘depictions of sexual acts’ or ‘depictions of nude bodies’ or ‘sexual representations’ or any other such euphemism. It means the graphic depiction of women as vile whores. In ancient Greece, not all prostitutes were considered vile: only the porneia

Andrea Dworkin, Pornography, 1981