Live Sex Acts (Parental Advisory: Explicit Material)

by Lauren Berlant
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Title:
Live Sex Acts (Parental Advisory: Explicit Material)
Author:
Lauren Berlant
Year: 
1995
Publication: 
Feminist Studies
Volume: 
21
Issue: 
2
Start Page: 
379
End Page: 
404
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Language: 
English
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Abstract:

LAUREN BERLANT

I am a citizen of the United States, and in this country where I live, every year millions of pictures are being made of women with our legs spread. We are called beaver, we are called pussy, our genitals are tied up, they are pasted, makeup is put on them to make them pop out of a page at a male viewer. . . . I live in a country where if you film any act of humiliation or torture, and if the victim is a woman, the film is both entertainment and it is protected speech. Now that tells me something about being a woman in this country.

-Andrea Dworkin, quoted in Edward de Grazia, Girls Lean Back Everywhere: The Law of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius

I open with this passage not simply to produce in advance the resistances, ambivalences, and concords that inevitably arise when someone speaks with passion and authority about sex and identity but, rather, to foreground here the centrality, to any public sphere politics of sexuality, of coming to terms with the conjunction of making love and making law, of fucking and talking, of acts and identities, of cameras and police, of plea- sure in the text and patriarchal privilege, insofar as these cou- plings can be found in fantasies of citizenship and longings for freedom made in the name of national culture.

I'm going to tell you a story about this, a story about citizen- ship in the United States. It is about live sex acts, and also about a book called Live Sex Acts, and about a thing called na- tional culture that, in reference to the United States, I mean to bring into representation here-which is hard, because the modality of national culture in the United States I will de-

Feminist Studies 21, no. 2 (summer 1995).O 1995 by Feminist Studies, Inc. 379

scribe exists mainly as a negative projection, an endangered species, the shadow of a fetish currently under a perceived at- tack by sex radicals, queers, pornographers, and pop music cul- ture. Of course, national culture, an archive that perpetually seeks a future, is always a negative sign to be defined, even when it appears as a positive one with an essential character. Because the nation can only assure itself a past, the national culture industry that operates in the public sphere generates a mode of political discourse that, in the United States, seeks to trump all other explanations and images of collective sociality and power-just as the nation itself aspires to saturate the hori- zon of the modern political imagination in order proleptically to dominate the future. Above all, and for all the explicit informa- tion citizens receive about what is happening at the core of the nation and national society, the national culture industry in the United States also generates competing amnesias about the means by which the nation's hegemonic contradictions and contingencies are constructed, consented to, and displaced. The relation between knowledge and amnesia in this view is not a binary one, one of mutual negation. Rather, it remains always a point of contestation how thoroughly the forms of intelligibil- ity that give citizens access to political culture are monuments to false consciousness, or the inevitable partial truths of pub- licly held information, or, as Michael Taussig says, the full "coming together of reason and violence" that generates para- doxes of knowing and unknowing, such that constellations of ordinary pragmatic detail, good-enough comprehensions of na- tional activity, and traumatized pseudoknowledges together can be said to constitute the ongoing lived relations among states, national ideology, and citizens.'

This essay began as a review of some recent feminist work on pornography2 In it I take no position on "pornography," as such, but discuss it in terms of how, more broadly, the U.S. citi- zen's vulnerability and aspiration to a nationally protected identity has been orchestrated through a variety of sexualizing media forms. In this regard the essay refocuses the discussion away from the domain of the politics of sexual difference and toward the conjunction of sexuality, mass culture, and mass nationality.

In particular, I am interested in tracing some meanings of

privacy, a category of law and a condition of property that con- stitutes a boundary between proper and improper bodies, and a horizon of aspiration vital to the imagination of what counts as legitimate U.S. citizenship. Privacy here describes, simulta- neously, a theoretical space imagined by U.S. constitutional and statutory law; a scene of taxonomic violence that devolves privilege on certain actual spaces of practical life; a juridical substance that comes to be synonymous with secure domestic interiority; and a structure of protection and identity that sanc- tions, by analogy, other spaces that surround, secure, and frame the bodies whose acts, identities, identifications, and so- cial value are the booty over which national culture wages its struggle to exist as a struggle to dominate sex.

Thus, this story will indeed contain graphic images, parental advisories, and magical thinking-that is to say, the usual dia- lectic between crassness and sublimity that has long dressed the ghosts of national culture in monumental forms and made it available for anxious citizens who need to invoke it on behalf of stabilizing one or another perceived social norm. This story has real and fictive characters, too-John Frohnmayer, Andrea Dworkin, Tipper Gore, and some fat, queer Nazis who try to join the military; but its main players are a little girl and an adult, both Americans. The little girl stands in this essay as a condensation of many citizenship fantasies. It is in her name as future citizen that state and federal governments have long policed morality around sex and other transgressive represen- tations; the psychological and political vulnerability she repre- sents has provided a model for other struggles to transform mi- nority experience in the United States. And it is in her name that something other to her, called, let's say, "adult culture," has been defined and privileged in many national domains. Although not without its contradictions: we have the "adult" by whose name pornography is marked, as in "adult booksu-and the one who can, on the other hand, join with other adults to protect the still unhistorical little girl whose citizenship, if the adults act as good parents, might pass boringly from its minor- ity to what has been called the "zone of privacy" or national heterosexuality "adult" Americans generally seek to inhabit.

"Zone of privacy" is a technical phrase, invented in a Su- preme Court opinion of 1965. It was Justice William 0. Douglass's opinion in Griswold v. Connecticut that designated for the first time the heterosexual act of intercourse in marital bedrooms as protected by a zone of privacy into which courts must not peer and with which they must not interfere. Justice Douglass's rezoning of the bedroom into a nationally protected space of privacy allowed married citizens of Connecticut for the first time to purchase birth control. It sought to make national a relation that its says precedes the Bill of Rights. It consoli- dated the kind of thinking that happened when the justices re- cently, in Bowers v. Hardwick, confirmed the irreducible het- erosexuality of the national bedroom, as it established once again that homosexuality has no constitutionally supported privacy protections in the United States. It could have been otherwise. Writing a memo to be circulated among Supreme Court justices, Daniel Richman, a clerk for Thurgood Marshall, sought to instruct the Court about oral and anal sex. He wrote to the justices, in capital letters, "THIS IS NOT A CASE ABOUT ONLY HOMOSEXUALS. ALL SORTS OF PEOPLE DO THIS KIND OF THING."3 He does not name the "sorts" of people. But in almost referring to heterosexuality, that sacred national identity that happens in the neutral territory of na- tional culture, Richman almost made the "sex" of heterosexual- ity imaginable, corporeal, visible, public.

Thus, I mean to oppose a story about live sex acts to a story about "dead citizenship." Dead citizenship, which haunts the shadowland of national culture, takes place in a privacy zone and epitomizes an almost Edenic conjunction of act and identi- ty, sacred and secular history. It involves a theory of national identity that equates identity with iconicity. It requires that I tell you a secret history of acts that are not experienced as acts, because they take place in the abstract idealized time and space of citizenship. I use the word "dead," then, in the rhetori- cal sense designated by the phrase "dead metaphor." A meta- phor is dead when, by repetition, the unlikeness risked in the analogy the metaphor makes becomes so conventionalized as to no longer seem figural, no longer open to history: the leg of a table is the most famous dead metaphor. In the fantasy life- world of national culture, citizens aspire to dead identities- constitutional personhood in its public sphere abstraction and suprahistoricity; reproductive heterosexuality in the zone of privacy. Identities not live, or in play; but dead, frozen, fixed, or at rest.

The fear of ripping away the privacy protections of heterona- tional culture has led to a national crisis over the political meanings of imaginable, live, and therefore transgressive sex acts, acts that take place in public either by virtue of a state optic or a subcultural style. By bringing more fully into relief the politics of securing the right to privacy in the construction of a sexuality that bears the definitional burden of national culture, I am in part telling a story about preserving a bound- ary between: what can be done and said in public, what can be done in private but not spoken of in public, and what can, pa- triotically speaking, neither be done nor legitimately spoken of at all, in the United States. Thus, there is nothing new about the new national anthem, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pur- sue." I am also telling a story about transformations of the body in mass national society and thinking about a structure of political feeling that characterizes the history of national sentimentality, in which, at moments of crisis, persons violate the zones of privacy that give them privilege and protection in order to fur something social that feels threatening: they prac- tice politics, they generate publicity, they act in public, but in the name of privacy. I mean to bring into representation these forms of citizenship structured in dominance, in scenes where adults act on behalf of the little girl form that represents totemically and fetishistically the unhumiliated ~itizen.~

She is the custodian of the promise of zones of privacy that national culture relies on for its magic and its reproduction.

LOOKING FOR LOVE IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES: LIVE SEX ACTS IN AMERICA
When John Frohnmayer made his pilgrimage to serve the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) in Washington, D.C., he was a "babe in the woods" of politics who hoped to "re- kindl[el" the "free spirit" of a nation that he saw to be defiled by the televisually alienated forces of the public sphere in the United States. He initially imagined using the NEA to repro- duce the nation through its localities-emphasizing not cities (which are, apparently, not localities) but the rural and provin- cia1 cultures whose neglected "vitality" might help return the mass nation to a non-mass-mediated sense of tribal intimacy. Frohnmayer's autobiography, Leaving Town Alive: Confessions of an Arts Warrior, describes in great detail the deep roots of the nation in aesthetic genealogies of an organic citizenry. For example, he tells of the gospel roots of rap, the spirit of fiddling in an age of "overamplified electronic music," Native American weaving, ballet, and other arts that make "no mention of ho- mosexuality, foul words, or nudity" 5-which, according to this logic, become phenomena of cities and of mass culture.

But Frohnmayer's tenure at the NEA ran into the muck of the competition between a certain metropolitan and an uncer- tain national culture that finally drove him out of office. The cases of the X, Y, and Z portfolios of Robert Mapplethorpe, of the NEA Four, and of Tongues Untied are famous examples of how sex-radical performance aesthetics and visual cultures were inassimilable to the homophobic and mock-populist offi- cial national culture-making machine in Washington. But what got Frohnmayer fired was the NEA's support of a literary publication project in New York City that dragged the nation into the dirt, the waste, and the muck of sex and other gross particularities. This project, managed by a press called "the portable lower east side," produced two texts in 1991:Live Sex Acts and Queer City. The Reverend Donald Wildmon made these texts available to every member of Congress, President George Bush, and Vice-President Dan Quayle. He also wrote a letter to them citing an excerpt from a poem as evidence for the virtually treasonous use of taxpayer money to support art that besmirched national culture. My first exhibit, or should I say, my first "inhibit," is the poem "Wild Thing," published in Queer City. "Wild Thing," written by the poet "Sapphire" (Ra- mona Lofton), performs in the fictive voice of one of the boys whose wilding expedition in 1989 resulted in the rape and beating of the woman called "the Central Park jogger."

I remember when

Christ sucked my dick

behind the pulpit

I was 6 years old

he made me promise

not to tell no one.6

I will return to this poem anon. But first, let me characterize these scandalous magazines. Frohnmayer describes Queer City accurately: "Although some of the pieces were sexual in tone and content, they were clearly meant to be artful rather than pr~rient."~

Queer City is a collective work of local culture, posit- ing New York as a vibrant site of global sexual identity, a mul- tinational place where people come to traverse the streets, live the scene, have sex, write stories and poems about it, and take pictures of the people who live it with pleasure and impunity. It is an almost entirely apolitical book, except in the important sense that the title Queer City remaps New York by way of the spaces where queer sex takes place, such that sexual identities are generated in public, in a metropolitan public constituted by a culture of experience and a flourish of publicity.

In contrast, and although Live Sex Acts is equally situated in New York City, a marked majority of its texts explain sex in terms of the national context and the political public sphere; indeed, many of the essays in Live Sex Acts are explicit re- sponses to the right-wing cultural agenda of the Reagan-Bush era. They demonstrate that it is not sexual identity as such that threatens America, which is liberal as long as sex aspires to iconicity or deadness, but suggest, rather, that the threat to national culture derives from what we might call sex acts on the live margin, sex acts that threaten because they do not as- pire to the privacy protection of national culture, nor to the narrative containment of sex into one of the conventional ro- mantic forms of modern consumer heterosexuality. This asser- tion of a sexual public sphere is also striking because Live Sex Acts closes by moving beyond a sexual performance ethic and toward other live margins. Two final segments, Krzysztof Wo- diczko's "Poliscar: A Homeless Vehicle" and a portfolio of poems by patients at Creedmoor Psychiatric Hospital, explicitly seek to redefine citizenship by naming who lives on the live mar- gins, and how. They show how the waste products of America must generate a national public sphere and a civic voice. To do this, the live margin must find its own media. A radically rede- fined category of live sex acts here becomes a mass medium for addressing and redressing the national culture industry.

In any case, as Frohnmayer says, the scandal these two mag- azines created had nothing to do with what kinds of subversive effect their small circulation might conceivably have had or as- pired to, with respect either to sexual convention or national identity. He describes the uproar as a scandal of reading. Donald Wildmon has spent much time in the last decade polic- ing sexual subcultures by attempting to humiliate state and federal arts councils for using taxpayer money to support transgressions of norms a putative ordinary America holds sa- cred. To christen the national as a locale with discernible stan- dards of propriety, he uses the logic of obscenity law, which since the 1970s has offered local zones the opportunity to spec- ify local standards with respect to which federal law might de- termine the obscenity of a text.

Wildmon is unconcerned with the referential context of both the wild thing and the poem about it. He seeks to make irrele- vant any full exploration of the wilding poem in terms of the juridical and popular ideology of live sex and national culture it both symptomatized and helped to consolidate. Many have noted how the serious discussion of this event in terms of the politics of public spaces, of housing projects, of city parks as homes and public property, of gender, of race, of classes and un- derclasses, of sexuality, of mass media, and of the law was de- flected into a melodrama of the elite. But, already on record ac- cusing the NEA of promoting "blasphemy" and "the homosexu- al lifestyle," Wildmon grasped the passage "Christ sucked my dick" and brought its attention to Jesse Helms, who shortly thereafter got Frohnmayer, whom Pat Robertson had nick- named "Satan," fired.8

Frohnmayer claims to know nothing about homosexuality in the United States, and I believe he is right, although he knows something about homoeroticism. For example, in arguing against the Helms Amendments he suggests the difficulty of telling "whether homoeroticism differed from garden-variety eroticism, whether it applied to females as well as males, whether it would pass muster under the Fourteenth Amend- ment tests of rational classifications and equal protection, or whether it was illegal for two persons of the same gender to hold hands, kiss, or do something more in deep shadow."1° Of course we know there is no deep shadow for gay sex in Ameri- ca: deep shadow is the protected zone of heterosexuality, or dead citizenship, and meanwhile all queers have is that closet.

But if Frohnmayer does not know sex law, he knows what artis and also knows that when the NEA funds works of art it effec- tively protects them from obscenity prosecution.ll Thus, he le- gitimates this poem and Queer City in toto by reference to the standard of what art attempts. If the aspiration to art makes sexual representation protected by the national imprimatur, it is the content of "Wild Thing" that secures the success of its as- piration. Frohnmayer writes:

These lines have been taken out of context and sensationalized. The poem, in its entirety, is emotional, intense and serious. . . . [It] deals with an ac- tual event-the violent rape of a female jogger in Central Park-and must be read in its entirety in order to receive a fair appraisal. . . . It's not meant to make us feel good. It's not meant as an apology for a violent act. And it's certainly not meant to be sacrilegious, unless pedophilia is part of religious dogma. The poem is meant to make us think and to reflect on an incredibly brutal act in an allegedly civilized society.12

Again, there is much to say about wilding, the wild thing, the poem about it, the song it refers to, and the wild incitement to govern expression this unfinished event has generated, which results in the contest over national meaning and value. First of all, Wildmon reads the poem as a direct indictment of the church for its alleged implied support of homosexual child mo- lestation. Frohnmayer contests this reading with one that fo- cuses on the purported failure of the Black family to guide youth toward disciplined obedience to patriarchal authority. In Frohnmayer's description, the fate of the white woman repre- sents what will happen to America when undersocialized boys abused by life in the projects and failed by parents leave their degenerate natal locales. They will terrorize property, women, and the nation; they will be bad men.

Frohnmayer's version of the poem cuts out entirely the poet's image of the fun, the pleasure, indeed the death-driven jouissance of the wilding man, his relation to mass culture, to his own body, to his rage at white women and men, his pleasure in his mastery over language, and over the racist conventions he knows he inspires. Clearly that isn't the stuff of art or America. Most importantly, he also parentalizes the nation by locating the virtue of art in its disclosure that the source of sexual vio- lence and social decay (the end of American civilization) is in absent fathers and failed mothers. He ventriloquizes the poet's ventriloquized poem about wayward youth to prophesy about the future of national culture, which is in danger of collective acts of wilding. This hybrid official image: of the nation as a vicious youth, and as a formerly innocent youth betrayed by bad parenting, and as a child who might be saved by good official parents, is at the heart of contemporary citizenship policy. Here is a story about the attempt to construct a national culture that resists an aesthetic of live sex in the name of youth, heterosex- uality, and the national future.

WHAT "ADULTS" DO TO '!LITTLE GIRLS": MINOR CITIZENS IN THE MODERN NATION
When Anthony Comstock made his pilgrimage to Washington in 1873 to show the Congress what kinds of literature, informa- tion, and advertisements about sex, contraception, and abor- tion were being distributed through the U.S. mails, he initiated a process of nationalizing the discipline of sexual representa- tion in the United States in the name of protecting national culture. Comstock installed this regime of anxiety and textual terror by invoking the image of youth, and in particular, the stipulated standard of the little girl whose morals, mind, acts, body, and identity would certainly be corrupted by contact with adult immorality.13 Until the 1957 Roth v. United States and the 1964 rulings on the novel The Tropic of Cancer and the film Les Amants, the Comstockian standard of the seducible little girl reigned prominently in court decisions about the obscenity of texts; indeed, as Edward de Grazia describes in Girls Lean Back Everywhere: The Law of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius, this putative little girl who might come into harmful contact with unsafe sexual knowledge and thus be induced by reading into performing harmful live sex acts (at least of inter- pretation) has been central to defining minor and full citizen- ship in the United States. She has come to represent the stan- dard from which the privileged "adult" culture of the nation has fallen. Protecting her, while privileging him, establishing therein the conditions of minor and full citizenship, has thus been a project of pornographic modernity in the United States.

To certify obscenity legally a three-pronged standard must be met. The material must appeal to a prurient interest in sex, must be patently offensive to contemporary community stan- dards, and be "utterly without redeeming social value."14 The Roth and Miller decisions nationalized obscenity law for the first time, thus defining the adult who consumes pornography as an American in the way that the Fourteenth Amendment enfranchised African Americans as full citizens by locating pri- mary citizenship in the nation and only secondarily in states. Speaking of pornography's consumers, Andrea Dworkin and Catherine MacKinnon put succinctly this conjuncture of what we might call pornographic personhood, an amalgam of nation, nurture, and sacred patriarchy: "Pornography is their Dr. Spock, their Bible, their Constit~tion."'~

De Grazia's history of American obscenity, along with his anthology Censorship Landmarks, reveals how the pressure to define obscenity has all along involved a struggle to define the relative power of na- tional, state, and local cultures to control the contact the public might have with prurient materials. For example, in Jacobellis

v. Ohio, the Ohio case concerning Les Amants, Justice Brennan argued: "We recognize the legitimate and indeed exigent inter- est of States and localities throughout the Nation in prevent- ing the dissemination of material deemed harmful to children. But that interest does not justify a total suppression of such material, the effect of which would be to reduce the adult popu- lation . . . to reading only what is fit for children."16 This ten- dency to nationalize the obscene, the child, and the adult has been checked by the "community standards" doctrine em- braced by Chief Justice Warren Burger in 1973. This doctrine empowers local police, judges, prosecutors, juries, and citizen interest groups to determine the standards of local morality from which the nation should protect them. The Burger court thus dissolved a major blockage to promoting a conservative cultural agenda, at least from the vantage point of Supreme Court precedent; the constitutional protection of free speech against the "chilling effect" of censorship, which sought to avert the terroristic effects of political repression on speech, could be avoided by localizing the relevant "context" according to the most local community standards. Central to establishing and maintaining these standards is the figure of the vulnera- ble little girl, a figure for minors-in-general. The situation of protected minor citizenship is thus a privilege for protection from adult heterosexual exploitation that national culture con- fers on its youth, its little girls and boys; paradoxically, the aura of the little girl provides a rationale for protecting the het- erosexual privacy zones of "adult" national culture.

Sometimes, when the little girl, the child, or youth are in- voked in discussions of pornography, obscenity, or the adminis- tration of morality in U.S. mass culture, actually endangered living beings are being imagined. Frequently, however, we should understand that these disturbing figures are fetishes, effigies that condense, displace, and stand in for arguments about who "the people" are, what they can bear, and when, if ever. The purpose of this excursus into the history of obscenity law has been to recast it within an assembly of parental ges- tures in which adult citizens are protected as children are pro- tected from representations of violence and sex and violent sex, for fear that those representations are in effect understood as doctrine or as documentary fantasy. Even the most liberal ob- scenity law concedes that children must neither see nor hear immoral sexltext acts: they must neither know it or see it, at least until they reach that ever more unlikely moment of ma- jority when they can consent freely to reading with a kind of full competence they must first be protected from having.

Nowhere is this infantilizing confluence of media, citizen- ship, and sex more apparent and symptomatically American than in the work of Andrea Dworkin, Catherine MacKinnon, and the 1986 report on obscenity popularly called the Meese Commission Report. Much has been written on the paradoxical effects of this collaboration between these radical feminists and the conservative cultural activity of the Republican-dominated State. Carole Vance and Edward de Grazia give scathing de- tailed accounts of the ideological excesses and incoherences of this collaboration, and MacKinnon and Dworkin write elo- quently about why the sexual harms women experience must be mended by law." I am not interested in adjudicating this de- bate here in its usual terms (civil rightsharm speecWantipatri- archal versus first amendmendfree speechhex radicalkbut I mean to be entering it obliquely, by examining the logic of its citizenship politics. I am interested in how it has helped to con- solidate an image of the citizen as a minor, female, youthful vic- tim who requires civil protection by the state whose adult citi- zens, especially adult men, seem mobilized by a sexual- and capital-driven compulsion to foul their own national culture.

This story can be told in many ways. The first step of the ar- gument by which pornography represents harm speech that fundamentally compromises women's citizenship in the United States establishes that pornography is a live sex act. It is live partly because, as the Milwaukee ordinance avows, "Pornogra- phy is what pornography does." There is a sense here, shared by many textual critics (not just of pornography), that texts are muscular active persons in some sense of the legal fiction that makes corporations into persons: texts can and do impose their will on consumers, innocent or consenting.18 Second, this notion of textual activity, of the harm pornographic texts perform as a desired direct effect on their consumers, has become intensi- fied and made more personal by the visual character of con- temporary pornography.

The optical unconscious dominates the scene of citizenship and pornographic exploitation the Meese Commission con- jures. I quote at length the opening to the chapter called "The Use of Performers in Commercial Pornography." This chapter opens with a passage from Andre Bazin's "The Ontology of the Photographic Image": "The objective nature of photography confers on it a quality of credibility absent from all other pic- ture-making. . . . The photographic image is the object itself, the object freed from the conditions of time and space that gov- ern it." The text glosses this representation of the image:

The leap from "picture making" to photography was . . . the single most important event in the history of pornography: images of the human body could be captured and preserved in exact, vivid detail. As with every other visible activity, sex could now, by the miraculous power of the camera, be "freed from the conditions of time and space." "Sex" in the abstract, of course, remains invisible to the camera; it is particular acts of sex between individual people which photographs, films, and video tapes can record.

By equating the violence that photography performs on history and personhood with the citizenship harms of pornography, Dworkin and Macamon locate the solution to sexual violence in a return to the scene and the mode of production, and, in- deed, Macamon sees herself as a materialist feminist for this reason. This view has effected a fundamental shift in the focus of assessments of pornography's effects. Although social scien- tists still try to measure whether seeing violence leads to vio- lence, and how, the antipornography view also insists on engag- ing with the backstory of the porn, taking its effect on perform- ers and on the businessmen who control the condition of the performers as an important measure of its meaning. Further- more, as we shall see, the exploitation of the pornographic per- former becomes the model for the exploitation and violence to all women inscribed in the circuit of pornography's circulation.

Unlike literature or drawing, sexually explicit photography cannot be made by one person. . . . No study of filmed pornography can thus be com- plete without careful attention to the circumstances under which individ- ual people decide to appear in it, and the effects of that appearance on their lives. Nor is this an academic or trivial exercise. The evidence before us suggests that a substantial minority of women will at some time in their lives be asked to pose for or perform in sexually-explicit materials. It appears, too, that the proportion of women receiving such requests has in- creased steadily over the past several decades. If our society's appetite for sexually-explicit material continues to grow, or even if it remains at cur- rent levels, the decision whether to have sex in front of a camera will con- front thousands of Ameri~ans.'~

The ordinary woman and the pornographic model will experi- ence second-class citizenship in U.S. society, the argument goes, because sexualization constructs every woman as a po- tential performer of live sex acts that get photographed. In- deed, their story goes, even models in pornographic films insist that "acting" in pornography is a fiction: it is sex work eu- phemized as acting; it is public euphemized as private and per- sonal; it is coerced and exploitative, euphemized as consensual and part of a simple business exchange.

To find a precedent for protecting actors in pornography from experiencing in their jobs the unfreedom U.S. women ex- perience in everyday heterosexual life, the Meese Commission, MacKinnon, and Dworkin turn to the model of child pornogra- phy, both to psychologize the vulnerability of women and to justifjr the prosecution of all pornographers. "Perhaps the sin- gle most common feature of models is their relative, and in the vast majority of cases, absolute youth." By definition, pornog- raphers are exploiting young girls when they pay women to perform sex acts in front of cameras. Exploiting women-as- young-girls, they are performing a class action against wom- en's full citizenship in the American public sphere.

Pornographers promote an image of free consent because it is good for business. But most women in pornography are poor, were sexually abused as children, and have reached the end of this society's options for them, op- tions that were biased against them as women in the first place. This alone does not make them coerced for purposes of the Ordinance; but the fact that some women may "choose" pornography from a stacked deck of life pursuits (if you call a loaded choice a choice, like the "choice" of those with brown skin to pick cabbages or the "choice" of those with black skin to clean toilets) and the fact that some women in pornography say they made a free choice does not mean that women who are coerced into pornography are not coerced. Pimps roam bus stations to entrap young girls who left in- cestuous homes thinking nothing could be worse. . . . Young women are tricked or pressured into posing for boyfriends and told that the pictures are just "for us," only to find themselves in this month's Hustler. . . . Women in pornography are bound, battered, tortured, harassed, raped, and sometimes killed. . . . Children are presented as adult women; adult women are presented as children, &sing the vulnerability of a child with the sluttish eagerness to be fucked said to be natural to the female of every age.20

Leo Bersani has argued that the big secret about sex is that most people don't like it, but also that the fundamental trans- gressiveness and irrationality of sex makes its enactment a crucial opportunity to resist the dead identities of the social.21 We see in the antipornographic polemic of MacKinnon and Dworkin a fundamental agreement with Bersani's position: but, more dramatically, the little girl too sexualized to be a citi- zen has no privilege, no "adult" advantages, that would allow her to shuttle between legitimated sociality and a sexual resis- tance to it. Rather, she is the opposite of "someone who mat- ters, someone with rights, a full human being, and a full citi- ~en."~The

sentimental logic of this antipornography argu- ment thus links women and children to the nation in a variety of ways. In terms of the public sphere where civil rights are ex- perienced as a matter of everyday life, women are paradoxical- ly both the bearers of the value of privacy and always exposed and available to be killed into identity, which is to say into pho- tography, into a sexual optic, and into heterosexuality, but not the sacred kind. Thus, the cycle of pornography: it makes men child abusers who sentimentalize and degrade their objects; meanwhile, because young girls and women need to survive both materially and psychically in a culture of abuse, they be- come addicted to the stereotypical structure of sexual value and exploitation, forced to become either subjects in or to pornography. In this way the child's, the young girl's vulnera- bility is the scene merely covered over and displaced by the older woman's pseudoautonomy; the young girl's minority is the true scene of arrested development of all U.S. women's sec- ond-class citizenship. For this reason, this logic of infantile second-class citizenship has become both a moral dominant in the public sphere and a precedent in court prosecution of porn~graphy.~~

Court prosecution of pornography found its excuse to rescue adult women from pornographic performance by taking the im- age of the vulnerable child performer of sex acts as the auratic truth of the adult. The Supreme Court decision on New York u. Ferber in 1982 for the first time extended its analysis of such material to encompass the "privacy interests" of the perform- ers-in this case children. Filming children in the midst of ex- plicit sexual activity not only harmed them because of the sex- ual abuse involved but also because "the materials produced are a permanent record of the children's participation and the harm to the child is exacerbated by their circulation." In addi- tion, the continued existence of a market for such materials was bound to make it more likely that children would be abused in the future, thus justifying a ban on di~tribution.~~

We have seen this argument before-that child abuse begets itself, child porn begets both abuse and porn, and that these beget the damaged inner children of adult women, who therefore must be saved from the child pornography that is the truth of their submission to the sex apparatus that befouls the national culture whose privileges women have either no access to, or ac- cess to only by virtue of proximity to heterosexual genital in- tercourse. The stakes of this vision of juridical deliverance are therefore not just personal to some U.S. women but reveal fun- damental conditions of national identity for all women in the United States.

Even more striking is how vital a horizon of fantasy national culture remains, even to some radicals, in its promise of corpo- real safety and the privacy of deep shadow. When Dworkin as- serts that women's everyday experience of sexual degradation in the United States is both a condition of their second-class citizenship, and the most fundamental betrayal of them all, she seeks to occupy the most politically privileged privacy protec- tions of the very national sexuality whose toxic violence defines the lives of U.S. women. Here America's promise to release its citizens from having a body to humiliate trumps the feminist or materialist visionary politics Dworkin might have espoused, politics that would continue to imagine a female body as a citi- zen's body that remains vulnerable because public and alive, engaged in the ongoing struggles of making history.

HOW TO RAISE PG KIDS IN AN X-RATED NATION

We have seen that in Washington the nationalist aspirations to iconicity of the high arts and the ars erotica play out a wish to dissolve the body. They reveal a desire for identity categories to be ontological; dead to history; not in any play or danger of rep- resentation, anxiety, improvisation, desire, or panic. This senti- mentality suggests how fully the alarm generated around iden- tity politics in the United States issues from a nostalgia or de- sire for a suprahistorical nationally-secured personhood that does not look to acts of history or the body for its identifica- tions. Recently, the education of the American into these fanta- sy norms of citizenship has become an obsession about peda- gogy. My third inhibit in this argument about how the moral domination of live sex works in contemporary U.S. culture takes the form of a book report on Tipper Gore's Raising PG Kids in an X-Rated So~iety.~~

It would be very easy to cite passages from this book in or- der to humiliate it. It is full of bad mixed metaphors, pseudo- science, and rickety thinking. But I want to take seriously its images of the citizen as a minor: the mirror that Gore looks into shows a terrible national present and foretells a frighten- ing future for what she calls our national character. Her repre- sentation of the inner child of national culture repeats precise- ly the icon of feminized infantile vulnerability I have described as the scene of national anxiety in the previous two sections of this essay; she assumes as well the absolute value of the im- plicit, private, sacred, heterofamilial fetish of national culture. But my main interest is to trace the logic and social theory of citizen action that emerges here, which has become dominant in the contemporary U.S. public sphere, for reasons I have tried to suggest. The book's very reference to "PG kids" in its title suggests a theory of national personhood in which each person is an undeveloped film whose encounters with traumat- ic images and narratives might well make her or him a trau- matized person who repeats the trauma the way a film repeats scenes. It suggests that a rating system for such persons might reveal their identities to each other and protect us all from the mere repetition of violence that is the social text of the United States, an x-rated place with x-rated adult citizens begetting a generation of monsters (someone might call it "Generation Xu).

Raising PG Kids in an X-Rated Society opens like a slasher film, with a scene of Tipper Gore fleeing New York City to the "familiarity, love, and comfort of home" in bucolic Washington,

D.C. Yet she finds that the sin of the big city has invaded Washington through the infectious circuits of mass culture. At home Gore faces what she has purchased for her eleven-year- old daughter-a record, Purple Rain, which contains "Darling Nikki," a song that glamorizes masturbation. With MTV, Gore realizes, Prince and his ilk make sexual trouble for her daugh- ters: "These images frightened my children; they frightened me!" Gore then sets out on a pilgrimage from her living room, through Washington, to the nation, to defend youth from pre- mature contact with sex. By "sex" she means the practice of vi- olent liveness the antipornography activists above employ, as portrayed here in lyrics, on album covers, in rock concerts, and on MTV. Meanwhile, what she means by youth is similarly elastic, as the vulnerable little girl citizen of U.S. culture ranges in this book from age one to her early twenties, the time when, Gore admits, kids are finally competent to enter "sexual relationship^."^^ However, she also uses the consumer bromide "youth of all ages" to describe the ongoing surprise, hurt, humiliation, and upset even adults experience when hav- ing unwonted encounters with all kinds of "excess," including sex, alcohol, drugs, suicide, and Satanism.

Under the pressure of this youth crisis, which also general- izes to all ages and is therefore in her view a crisis of national character and national culture, Gore joined with other con- cerned wives of men powerful in the U.S. state apparatus to engender a counterpublic sphere-via the Parents Music Re- source Center (PMRC)-whose purpose is to make the profit- driven, sexually suffused, popular music industry nationally accountable for terrorizing a generation of American youths through premature exposure to a world of live sex acts. Gore claims her arguments are antimarket but not anticapitalist, anti-sex explicitness but not procensorship, "promorality" but not anti-sex. She notes that there seems to be a lyricharrative hierarchy in obscenity law. Although children are indeed not permitted access to adult films, books, and magazines, they are permitted access to equally explicit record covers, live perfor- mance rock concerts and videos of songs, as well as lyrics that perform the same acts minors are not allowed to consume when they are not the market population designated by capi- talists. "If no one under eighteen can buy Penthouse magazine," she writes, "why should children be subjected to . . . hard-core porn in the local record shop? A recent album from the Dead Kennedys band contained a graphic poster of multi- ple erect penises penetrating vaginas. Where's the difference? In the hands of a few warped artists, their brand of rock music has become a Trojan Horse, rolling explicit sex and violence into our homes."27

In addition to pointing out the intemperance of the record industry and the artists who produce what she calls "porn rock," and in addition to exposing the contradictions in the law's intention to protect children, two other issues dominate Gore's reading of the general crisis in national culture. They do not involve critiques of the immorality of capitalism and law. They involve the failure of American adults to be competent parents and a passionate argument, predictable but yet unfin- ished, to extend the model of infantile citizenship to nonminor

U.S. citizens through an image of the adult citizen as social parent. In particular, Gore depicts the devastating effects of adults' general refusal to acknowledge the specifically limited capacities of children, such that proper boundaries between children and adults are no longer being drawn. She also testi- fies to the failure of the family to compensate for the escalating norms of sexual and corporeal violence in everyday life, mass culture, and the public sphere at large.

Gore turns to social scientists and psychologists to mourn the loss of childhood in America-not only for latchkey children whose mothers work, not only broken families (that is, ones without fathers), but even in the 7 percent of families with in- tact originary parents, stay-at-home mothers, and fully geneti- cally related children, parents have begun to mistake the elo- quence of children for "mature reasoning powers and critical skills." However, she argues that "anyone who attempts to de- bate the porn rock issue as if young people are in the same in- tellectual and emotional category as adults does them a terri- ble injustice. We need to let children be children. Children think differently from adults and process information accord- ing to their own stages of devel~pment."~~

If the cognitive difference between children and adults were not enough to require special adult wisdom with respect to su- perintending the lives of children, Gore goes on to show that the dissolution of the "smiling nuclear family," increases in family violence, spouse abuse and child abuse, and, most dra- matically, the "violent world" of life in the United States have resulted simultaneously in the saturation of children's minds with scenes of terror and the desensitization of their minds to- ward terror, indeed through its transformation into pleasure and entertainment. Gore argues that adults have ruined U.S. society with their excesses and with their will to make public intimate and complicated relations, like sex, and with their negligent complacence about the violence, annihilation, ex- ploitation, and neglect into which children are thrust daily. This sacrifice to the indulgences of American adulthood is the distinguishing mark of the generation of children that current- ly exists. In contrast, Gore distinguishes (and, one must say, misremembers) her own generation, which we might call the generation of 1968, by its relation to two key texts: "Twist and Shout" and "I Love

Thus, when Tipper Gore places the words "Explicit materi- al-parental advisory" on the title page of her book, we are to understand that her project is to train incompetent American adults to be parents, as a matter of civic and nationalist peda- gogy. Although all Americans are youths in her view, in other words, incompetent to encounter live sex acts or any sex in public, she also desperately tries to redefine "adult" into a cate- gory of social decay more negative than any national category since the "delinquent" of the 1950s. The new virtuous category of majority is "parent." The new activist citizenship Tipper Gore imagines to express the true morality of U.S. national cul- ture refuses the contradictions of traditional patriarchal privi- lege that both moralizes against and promotes the erotic ter- rorizing of women and children. (No sympathetic mention is made of the sexually terrorized Others on the live margins of national heterosexuality.) Gore advises parents in every chap- ter to think of parenting as a public profession, like being a lawyer or a politician; and she encourages what she calls "pa- rental solidarity" groups to take the private activity of nurtur- ing children away from mass media-induced but home-circulat- ed materials that promote sex and violence. She imagines a nation controlled by a local, public, community matrix of pa- rental public spheres. Above all, she characterizes this grass- roots model of citizenship on behalf of the "rights" parents have to control what they and their children encounter as a model for national political agency itself Here are the last words of the conclusion: "It's not easy being a parent these days. It's even tougher being a kid. Perhaps together we can help our society grow up."30

I was cruising, one early morning last spring, the Sunday morning talk shows: Meet the Press, This Week with David Brinkley, Face the Nation. But along the way I ran across a couple of video events that I have not yet recovered from see- ing. The first was a Jerry Falwell commercial, played during the Old Time Gospel Hour. In it he offers us the opportunity to spend four dollars engaging in citizenship acts. We might call 1-900-3422 in support of "the new homosexual rights agenda" soon, he said, to be signed into law by President Clinton. Or we might call 1-900-3401 to say that although we pray for the president, we do not support "the new homosexual rights agen- da," we do not want our "children to grow up in an America where a new homosexual rights agenda" is law; he keeps re- peating the phrase "new homosexual rights agenda" and posts the phone numbers on the TV screen, the background for which is a purple, and not a lavender, map of mainland Amer- ica. Next I flipped to C-Span, which happened-I say, as though it were random-to be showing a tape of a speech given by Major Melissa Wells-Petry, sponsored by the Christian Action Network, a speech shown at least once later the same day, which I taped and watched compulsively. Major Wells-Petry, a U.S. military attorney, was giving a speech about why gays ought to be barred from the military. She described the vast in- compatibility of the nation and the gay man; she knew the law, well, colloquially. Her reason for rejecting a gay presence in the military was that when someone says: "I am a homosexual," there is "data" to support that he is "likely to engage in homo- sexual acts." There is no possibility that a homosexual has an identity that is not evidenced in acts. She says the courts have proven that to be homosexual is to behave as a homosexual, just as a pilot can be said to be a pilot because he flies air- planes. I have no idea as to whether she was secretly thinking about the "cruising" altitude of planes, or about the cliche that queers are light in the loafers. In any case, she also argues that gayness is only one of many behavioral identities the army bars from service, and she names two others: in an aside, she notes that fatness makes you unfit for service; more elabo- rately, she recounts a case where a Nazi walked into a recruit- ing station and asked to enlist but was barred from enlisting because being a Nazi makes you unfit to serve in the U.S. mili- tary. I fell into a dream that day, about Griswold v. Connecticut and Roe v. Wade, two cases I was teaching the following week. These two cases are generally thought to be crucial to the struggle to gain sex equality in the United States. Griswold u. Connecticut made it possible for married couples to buy birth control; Roe u. Wade made it possible to abort some fetuses birth control didn't prevent from being conceived. But the lan- guage about heterosexuality and pregnancy these cases pro- moted did nothing to shake up the normative relations of sex and nationality in modern America. In my dream, I tried to ex- plain to someone in a supermarket how the zone of privacy es- tablished for married sex acts in Griswold v. Connecticut even further enshrined heterosexual reproductive activity as the fundamental patriotic American fetish, so powerful it was en- tirely private; it was the only fixed sign in the national lan- guage. Indeed, I insisted on telling her, and with great painful prolixity, of Justice Harlan's opinion, that the "right of privacy is not an absolute. Thus, I would not suggest that adultery, ho- mosexuality, fornication and incest are immune from criminal enquiry, however privately practiced. [But] . . . the intimacy of husband and wife is necessarily an essential and accepted fea- ture of the institution of marriage, an institution which the State not only must allow, but which always and in every age it has fostered and protected." Then, somehow bored in my own dream, I turned my back and looked out the window, where I saw a pregnant woman wandering naked in traffic. I watched her, transfixed, for the longest time. When I awoke, I asked myself, what is the wish of the dream? I didn't know, but what flashed up instead was a line from Roe v. Wade: "The pregnant woman cannot be isolated in her privacy."31

Let me review the argument: insofar as an American thinks that the sex she or he is having is an intimate, private thing constructed within a space governed by personal consent, she or he is having straight sex, straight sex authorized by nation- al culture; she or he is practicing national heterosexuality, which makes the sex act dead, in the sense I have described, using a kind of metaphor that foregrounds the ways heterofa- milial American identity reigns as a sacred national fetish be- yond the disturbances of history or representation, protected by a zone of privacy.

The privacy zone that projects national culture as a shadow effect of scandalous or potentially destabilizing acts of sexual alterity has a history, and I have tried to telegraph it here as a history of some live acts that counter an ideology of dead citi- zenship. Most importantly, until recently there has never in the United States been a public sphere organized around sex and sexuality-that is to say, a public sphere demarcated by what Geoff Eley has described as a political culture.32 The pre- history of this moment must transform our accounts of the con- temporary public sphere as well as of citizenship, nationality, acts, identities, sex, and so on. It might start with racial and gendered corporeal counterpolitics of the period after the Civil War, part of a general citizen reform movement, but also spe- cifically around issues of property and reproduction, the two most sacrosanct areas the Constitution designates. Suffrage meant to bring these nineteenth-century primitivist categories into national modernity, and the history of national sentimen- tality this essay partly tells has to do with the public failure of suffrage to solve the relation between the body and the state in the United States, such that a tactical shuttling between as- similation and banishment remains central to the complicated histories of those sexed, racialized, female, underclassed sub- jects who can be seen animating the live margins of the U.S. scene. In any case, as the Queer Nation motto "We Are Every- where, We Want Everything" suggests, the scandal of sexual subculture in the contemporary American context derives in part from its assertion of a noninfantilized political counter- public that refuses to tie itself to a dead identity; that sees sex- uality as a set of acts and world-building activities whose im- plications are always radically TBA, that aspires to undermine the patriotic ethics in which it is deemed virtuous to aspire to live in abstract America, a place where bodies do not live his- torically, complexly, or incoherently, guided by a putatively ra- tional, civilized standard. The basic sex-radical tactic has been to countercorporealize at every moment and so to de-elect the state and other social formations that have patriarchalized

and parentalized national culture. This is not enough, as Michael Warner has argued.33 But it is the beginning of a movement, and it's a live one.

This is to say that a radical social theory of sexual citizen- ship in the United States must not aspire to reoccupy the dead identities of privacy, or name the innocence of youth as the in- dex of adult practice and knowledge, or nationalize sexuality or sex as the central mode of self-legitimation or public-identity making. In this way it can avoid repeating the utopian identifi- cation that infantile citizenship promises, which distracts everyone from turning to the nation form and thinking about its inexhaustible energy for harnessing capitalism to death through promises of eternal identity and images of live activi- ty. It can then avoid repeating the struggle between crassness and sentimental sublimity that defines all of our bodies in the United States, all of our live sex if we're lucky enough to have it; our dead citizenship; and our potentially undead desires to form a live relation to power, nature, sensation, and history within or outside of the nation form as we know it. The risk is that peeling away the fantasies that both sustain and cover over the sexual bodies living the good life in the zone of privacy will also tear away some important protective coverings, like the fantasy of privacy itself, the way a Band-aid covering an unhealed wound will take away part of the wound and its bit of healing with it. But such violence and failure, such an opening of the wound to air, is a foundational condition for the next steps, which, after all, remain to be taken, seen, and critiqued, although not rated with an X, a PG, or a thumbs upunless the thumb is related to something else, like a fist.

NOTES

Thanks to Roger Rouse, Kim Scheppele, Michael Warner, and the great audiences at the University of Michigan, Rutgers, and Brown for much-needed conversation and challenge.

Michael Taussig has recently termed this saturation of the politics by the nation "state fetishism." This is a condition in which the state uses a sublime and magical official story of national identity to mask the nation's heterogeneity. See his "Maleficium: State Fetishism," in The Nervous System (New York: Routledge, 19921, 11140, 223.

The original texts meant to be reviewed were Allison Assiter, Pornography, Feminism, and the Individual (London: Pluto Press, 1989); Gail Chester and Julienne Dickey, Feminism and Censorship (Dorset, G.B.: Prism Press, 1988); Andrea Dworkin, Pornography (New York: E.P. Dutton, 1989); Susan Gubar and Joan Hoff, For Adult Users Only (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1989); Gordon Hawkins and Franklin E. Zimring, Pornography in a Free Society (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1988); Catherine Itzin, Pornography: Women, Violence, and Civil Liberties (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992). I have also read more widely in the literature pro and con and assume the entire oeuvre of Catherine MacKinnon in this essay as well.

Of these listed above, the British feminist texts (Assiter, Itzin, Chester and Dickey) share with the work of MacKinnon and Dworkin a sense that issues of sexu- al difference cannot be solved by American-style liberal thinking about ontological selfhood but must address the ways the state and the nation frame the conditions of sex, sexual identity, and gender value. Of the American texts that do not take a clear pornography-is-patriarchy position, the most useful is For Adult Users Only, which rehearses and I think extends the feminist debate over the causes, effects, and possibilities pornography poses for U.S. women. This essay takes no position on "pornography" as such but places this discussion in a context of thinking about how the citizen's vulnerability and aspiration to a nationally protected identity has been orchestrated around a variety or constellation of sexualizing media forms ordinarily not included in this discussion. In this regard this article "reviews" these texts by refocusing the discussion away from the domain of sexual difference and toward the conjunction of sexuality, mass culture, and mass nationality.

Daniel Richman, quoted in New York Times, 25 May 1993.

I take this way of thinking about the processes of making an institution appear hegemonic from Chandra Mohanty, who takes it from Dorothy Smith. See Chandra Mohanty's Introduction, "Cartographies of Struggle: Third World Women and the Politics of Feminism," in Third World Women and the Politics of Feminism, ed. Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Ann Russo, and Lourdes Torres (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 19911, 15-16; Dorothy Smith, The Everyday World as Problematic:

A Feminist Sociology (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 19871, 108.

John Frohnmayer, Leaving Town Alive: Confessions of an Arts Warrior (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1993),3,337,314,202.

Ibid., 324.

Ibid., 326.

Ibid., 291,324-25.

The "Helms Amendment" was offered to the U.S. Senate on October 7, 1989. It reads: "None of the funds authorized to be appropriated pursuant to this Act may be used to promote, discriminate, or produce materials that are obscene or that depict or describe, in a patently offensive way, sexual or excretory activities or organs, in- cluding but not limited to obscene depictions of sadomasochism, homo-eroticism, the sexual exploitation of children, or individuals engaged in sexual intercourse." See Congressional Record, lOlst Congr., 1st Sess., 1989, 135, S12967.

Frohnmayer, 69.

11. Edward de Grazia, Girls Lean Back Everywhere: The Law of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius (New York: Random House, 19921,637.

Frohnmayer, 326, 328-29.

De Grazia, 4-5.

Ibid., 436-37. See also Edward de Grazia, Censorship Landmarks (New York:

R.R. Bowker, 1969).

Andrea Dworkin and Catherine A. MacKinnon, Pornography and Civil Rights: A New Day for Women's Equality (Minneapolis: Organizing against Pornography, 1988),48.

Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 US 184, 195 (1964); see also de Grazia, Girls Lean Back Everywhere, 423-33. The case from which Justice Brennan quotes is Butler v. Michi- gan, 352 US 380,383 (1957).

Carole S. Vance, "The Pleasures of Looking: The Attorney General's Commis- sion on Pornography versus Visual Images," in The Critical Image, ed. Carol Squiers (Seattle: Bay Press, 1990),38-58.

See Robin West, "Pornography as a Legal Text," in For Adult Users Only, 108-30.

Attorney General's Commission on Pornography July 1986 Final Report vol. 1, 839-40.

Dworkin and MacKinnon, Pornography and Civil Rights, 43,45-46.

Leo Bersani, "Is the Rectum a Grave?" October 43 (winter 1987): 197-222.

Dworkin and MacKinnon, Pornography and Civil Rights, 52.

There are many other domains where infantile citizenship animates adult con- ceptions of national culture. See Lauren Berlant, "The Theory of Infantile Citizen- ship,"Public Culture 5 (spring 1993): 395-410.

Attorney General's Commission on Pornography vol. 1,849.

Tipper Gore, Raising PG Kids in an X-Rated Society (Nashville: Abington Press, 1987).

Ibid., 17, 18,41.

Ibid., 28.

Ibid., 39, 42.

Ibid., 43-48, 11.

Ibid., 167.

Griswold v. Connecticut, 381 US 479 (19751, Roe u. Wade, 410 US 113 (1973).

Geoffrey H. Eley, "Nations, Publics, and Political Cultures: Placing Habermas in the Nineteenth Century," in Habermas and the Public Sphere, ed. Craig Calhoun (Cambridge: MIT Press, 19921,289-339.

Michael Warner, "The Mass Public and the Mass Subject," in Habermas and the Public Sphere, 399-400.

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