Lady Gaga and Porn Studies


I haven’t written about Lady Gaga in a while. This entire Posterous blog started out as a joke, and then it turned into a place where I’d post some pieces that didn’t quite fit into the main blog, and others where I could upload huge videos that Blogger wouldn’t host. Then Posterous went under and I transferred the content to WordPress, where it seems like a serious blog.

Hence, it was time for a name change from The Neurocritic on Lady Gaga and… [whatever I was writing about that day]. But I thought one last Gaga post was in order after reading about the start of a new journal to be published by Routledge — Porn Studies:

Porn Studies is the first dedicated, international, peer-reviewed journal to critically explore those cultural products and services designated as pornographic and their cultural, economic, historical, institutional, legal and social contexts. Porn Studies will publish innovative work examining specifically sexual and explicit media forms, their connections to wider media landscapes and their links to the broader spheres of (sex) work across historical periods and national contexts.

The ‘Gaga in a meat grinder’ imagery is clearly a reference to the infamous Hustler meat grinder cover from 1978:

In 1970 [sic], women would no longer be treated like meat. On the cover of Hustler magazine or at the Born This Way Ball, meat is precisely how we treat them.

Hustler meat grinder cover

There was also an association with the relentless focus on body image. The fact that Lady Gaga had gained 25-30 pounds was not lost on the media (to the tune of 30,000,000 hits!). The most offensive headline comes up quite high in the search and doesn’t deserve a link: ‘Lady Gaga Looks Obese in a Bikini; Gains 30 Pounds [PHOTOS]’.

To her immense credit, Gaga started her Body Revolution campaign, where she acknowledged struggling with anorexia and bulimia since the age of 15 and called for compassion. Her revelations, and level of comfort with her body, resonated with fans.

Lady Gaga Body Revolution

Now you can submit your own analysis of Lady Gaga’s use of Hustler meat grinder imagery to a new academic journal. Call for Papers (PDF):

The editors, Feona Attwood (Middlesex University) and Clarissa Smith (University of Sunderland), and Routledge are pleased to announce the launch of a new journal devoted to the study of pornography.
. . .
Porn Studies invites submissions for publication, commencing with its first issue in Spring 2014. Articles should be between 5000 and 8000 words. Forum submissions should be 500-1500 words. Book reviews should be between 800 and 1500 words. Submissions will be refereed anonymously by at least two referees.

Link to Porn Studies announcement via @mocost.

lady gaga in meat grinder