In the previous sections, it has been established that the early porn research that has been conducted is often in a feminist or psychological tradition. In the former, there has been a focus upon the messages of the pornography texts and the harmful effects it is causing. In the latter, the focus was upon violent and deviant behaviours that pornography is inducing. The more recent pornography scholars are acknowledging that these researches are highly emotionally charged. Consequently, they are trying to read the pornography text reparatively by emphasising the more positive effects and opportunities pornography advances.
However, this study argued that this type of affective research is not conducive for observations about pornography, because still the interpretive lens of the feminist scholar is dominant and thereby other readings are neglected. Moreover, this type of research is also able to govern women’s sexualities. The feminist discourses are mostly negatively charged, emphasising the degradation of women. These kind of judgements are regulating how women are ought to experience their sexuality. The discourse is posing limitations upon what can and what cannot be practiced. Lastly, it has been briefly touched upon how pornography texts also contain discourses about sexuality. However, more research is needed about how the audience interprets the pornography texts to draw conclusions about the texts’ governing capabilities.
The target group of the research is women who will be sampled purposively. As young adolescent women are more insecure about their pornography consumption (Scarcelli, 2015) and they have had little life experience, the focus will lay upon women aged between 25 and 40. This particular age group has also been selected, because they were born at the time that online pornography and pornography films became widely distributed (Thompson, 2015). Moreover, to include a broad amount of variety in the sample, women with diverse ethnic backgrounds, varying levels of education and different social economic positions will be interviewed. This is of importance, because these characteristics could lead to another interpretive framework. The participants are recruited by snowball sampling, specifically chain referral sampling (Mack, et al. 2005). Hence, after suitable candidates have been selected, their networks will be utilised to recruit more participants. This technique is deemed especially useful when studying taboo topics (Boeije, 2010).
Qualitative research allows for the individual experiences of women to be central, thereby the scholar is forced to take several interpretive lenses into account. This is academically relevant, because it enriches the one-sided affective interpretations of the researchers. Moreover, the focus will no longer lay upon one specific moment in time. Instead, the porn biographies will reveal how women have experienced pornography throughout their lives and whether they have acquired new readings over time. This especially supplements the quantitative research, because effects studies are mostly experiments conducted at one particular moment. This is not representative of reality, because pornography is present almost everywhere (Häggström-Nordin et al., 2006). Lastly, the attentiveness to individual readings of the pornography texts will allow for more knowledge of what people actually get from these texts. Pornography induces a highly affective and bodily experience, therefore the question remains whether people consciously read these texts.
Besides the academic relevance, the societal relevance is also captured in the design and theoretical framework. The governing of women’s sexualities through discourses in and about pornography highlights the unequal power distribution between scholars and women. The regulation of women’s sexualities is one of the ways in which women are controlled. By gaining insight into how this process occurs, women can become more aware of the constraints they face and whether they want to form points of resistance. Moreover, the dominant discourse is partially countered, by the illumination of more deviant interpretations of the discourses. This again could instigate a discursive shift.