Sex sells

Money Shot: A Jour­ney into Porn and Censorship

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Books - Por­tia Lind­say

By Jeff Sparrow Scribe, 320pp, $29.95

LAST year anti-pornog­ra­phy ac­tivist Gail Dines vis­ited Aus­tralia for the Sydney Writ­ers Fes­ti­val and ap­peared on ABC1’s Q&A pro­gram. She used these fo­rums to de­fend strongly her anti-porn stance, chal­leng­ing mod­er­ate com­men­ta­tors on the pan­els.

Jeff Sparrow, ed­i­tor of Over­land mag­a­zine, is con­cerned with the wider is­sues sur­round­ing the pornog­ra­phy de­bate and in Money Shot, a thor­ough in­ves­ti­ga­tion of censorship in Aus­tralia, he leaves few stones un­turned.

He con­tem­plates the work of British-born, US-based Dines and in­ter­views Aus­tralian anti-porn ac­tivist Melinda Tankard-Reist. He goes back­stage at Sexpo to meet Amer­i­can porn star Lexi Belle. He un­der­goes train­ing with the Aus­tralian Clas­si­fi­ca­tion Board.

Sparrow chron­i­cles his trav­els — from adult shops in Sydney to Sexpo in Bris­bane to in­ter­ven­tion-af­fected North­ern Ter­ri­tory towns, as well as on the porn-drenched in­ter­net — in an en­ter­tain­ingly con­ver­sa­tional man­ner. I was cap­ti­vated by the awk­ward in­ter­views, sad en­coun­ters and dis­turb­ing sex­ual dis­plays. I be­came im­mersed in Sparrow’s method­ol­ogy and ex­pe­ri­ences. Wry observations of Sexpo con­vey

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