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Abstract

Professor Catharine MacKinnon, in a recent article in this journal, powerfully and perceptively developed her thesis that pornography is "[c]entral to the institutionalization of male dominance." Pornography, she urges, is "a political practice" that "causes attitudes and behaviors of violence and discrimination which define the treatment and status of half of the population." I am not sure that I would draw the line between Eros and dehumanization at the same point as Professor MacKinnon appears to. Moreover, all the evidence is not yet in as to the actual impact of pornography, and Professor MacKinnon may overstate its role in the subordination of women. Nevertheless, generally speaking, I accept Professor MacKinnon's basic position and proceed upon the premise that pornography plays a major part in establishing and maintaining male supremacy in our society.

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