The Aresan Clan is published four times a week (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun). You can see what's been written so far collected here. All posts will be posted under the Aresan Clan label. For summaries of the events so far, visit here. See my previous serial Vampire Wares collected here.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Unrealistic fantasies

A while ago I posted about how romance novels seem to be for women what porn is for men. So, it's interesting to see, at around the same time, a study by some authors that claim that romance novels lead to sexual health problems and a rant by Naomi Wolf claiming that porn leads men to have mental health problems, such as porn addiction and a propensity for extreme sex.

Both of the articles present the veneer of science credibility, but neither appears to have much weight to them. Mind Hacks takes apart Wolf's argument pretty succinctly, showing how she misuses some fact and basically doesn't understand the neurochemistry she presents in the article. The article about romance novels, similarly, doesn't seem to present any evidence of its conclusion. The article basically looks at romance novels, sees their content and pretty much says, "if women take these stories as realistic expectation for what to expect from real-world romances, that'll lead to problems," which is tantamount to saying, "If young kids read Harry Potter and start to expect that they're going to very soon discover that they're wizards capable of magic, that'll lead to problems." Nowhere does the article actually prove that women pick up romance novels thinking they're going to be education and informative.

So, I guess, maybe, porn and romance novels aren't that bad after all. Oh well. I guess we can go back to letting people occasionally and temporarily escape into their unrealistic fantasies.

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