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Adult Entertainment in the Eastern Bloc

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Soviet cogitations: 50
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Feb 2014, 05:02
Ideology: Trotskyism
Pioneer
Post 28 Feb 2014, 00:32
Did Eastern Bloc countries allow, and or have a pornagraphic industry. I know that in the west, most pornography is controlled by the private sector, but many years ago much of it was controlled by organized crime syndicates due to the fact that sexual material, and casual sex was much more frowned upon in the west at the time. If Eastern Bloc countries banned poranagraphic material was there still a market?

I know that this is a very strange question, but I'm just curios.
While the state exists, there can be no freedom. When there is freedom there will be no state. - V. I. Lenin
Soviet cogitations: 304
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 05 Feb 2014, 00:36
Komsomol
Post 28 Feb 2014, 14:59
I think in most it was banned. In the USSR especially at the end of the 80's they had problems with prostitution, a problem the liberals and traitors were happy to pour as much gas on as they could to "prove the inferiority of socialism."

I know for a fact in the GDR homosexuality was decriminalized, nudism was popular, and the state controlled the industry of (get this) erotic striptease, and there may or may not have been a secret police porn unit (though to be honest I'm skeptical of that claim).
Soviet cogitations: 687
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 01 Mar 2011, 14:10
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Komsomol
Post 01 Mar 2014, 09:16
A documentary on how sexual topics were treated in the GDR: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fl_r7rIcds8 (NSFW obviously)
Soviet cogitations: 2051
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 24 Jun 2011, 08:37
Party Bureaucrat
Post 16 May 2014, 20:47
Pornography was banned throughout the eastern bloc, Yugoslavia a notable exception from what I understand.

The East Germans in particular had quite a bit of "free body" culture going on, presumably feeling that this was a healthier way to express human nature.
Soviet America is Free America!

Under communism, there is no freedom; you are not free to live in poverty, be homeless, to be without an education, to starve, or to be without a job
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Soviet cogitations: 4386
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Resident Soviet
Post 16 May 2014, 21:58
Hi Red Specter,

Here's an older thread on the subject:

http://www.soviet-empire.com/ussr/viewtopic.php?f=107&t=47053

In short, don't know about the details of every Eastern Bloc country, but in the Soviet Union pornography was illegal, and legislated under the criminal code.

We should keep in mind that many Soviet social traditions, including views on pornography, were a fusion of some socialist justifications (against the commodification of human beings) and traditional Russian social conservativism. When it comes to social and cultural traditions it would always be best to remember that a) every country has its own social traditions, and these would partially carry over in socialism, and therefore b) judging the Soviet position as overly prudish, incorrect, anti-Marxist etc. would probably be both improper and a gigantic waste of time.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
Soviet cogitations: 216
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Jul 2013, 05:04
Ideology: Other Leftist
Pioneer
Post 17 May 2014, 04:46
I always assumed there would be less need for pornography in a socialist society anyway, and perhaps that was reflected in attitudes in the East. So much of the sex culture in the West is "unnatural" in the sense that it is pushed by commercial interests. Without the commercial interests to commodify sex, there would be less demand for pornography.

Also, I assume that relations between men and women would be more equal and there would be less social alienation under a socialist economic system. Was romance better in the East? I would assume that it would be under a less commercial system where love is not a commodity.
Loz
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Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Philosophized
Post 17 May 2014, 11:08
Quote:
We should keep in mind that many Soviet social traditions, including views on pornography, were a fusion of some socialist justifications (against the commodification of human beings) and traditional Russian social conservativism. When it comes to social and cultural traditions it would always be best to remember that a) every country has its own social traditions, and these would partially carry over in socialism, and therefore b) judging the Soviet position as overly prudish, incorrect, anti-Marxist etc. would probably be both improper and a gigantic waste of time.

Social conservationism is reactionary. For all the talk about the rights of women the USSR ( and i'm talking about Russia, not those Islamic Central Asian countries ) was still a very conservative, traditional and patriarchal society. Take that as you will but saying that is neither improper nor a waste of time, it's just another example of how the USSR failed at socialism.
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Soviet cogitations: 4386
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Resident Soviet
Post 17 May 2014, 14:38
Piccolo wrote:
Also, I assume that relations between men and women would be more equal and there would be less social alienation under a socialist economic system. Was romance better in the East? I would assume that it would be under a less commercial system where love is not a commodity.


It's a difficult question to judge, since there is no statistical 'relationship happiness' indicator. On the one hand I believe you are correct -the lack of personal selfish interest as a societal principle probably meant that there was less pressure (especially for men) to be well off when forming relationships, especially after high school/higher education. On the other hand couples did suffer from certain material deprivations, chief among them the lack of privacy during the courting and early marriage periods due to housing shortages. While this didn't prevent the expression of sexuality, it certainly stifled it to an extent, for obvious reasons.

Loz wrote:
Social conservationism is reactionary. For all the talk about the rights of women the USSR ( and i'm talking about Russia, not those Islamic Central Asian countries ) was still a very conservative, traditional and patriarchal society. Take that as you will but saying that is neither improper nor a waste of time, it's just another example of how the USSR failed at socialism.


Social conservativism existed (and exists) for reasons other than male commodification of women. The revolutionary anti-conservative concept of free love for instance can be seen as a failure in the sense that it has not led to increased happiness, especially among women, and on the contrary has led to new and ugly social problems and forms of emotional and psychological distress not experienced before. But that's my personal opinion.

I won't deny that the USSR maintained elements of patriarchal society, some of them socially justifiable (i.e. that the commander in chief of the armed forces shouldbe a man) and others not (i.e. that women who work end up with 'double duty' as a result of social patriarchy continuing to exist despite legislated equality). However, I say this is irrelevant because if there was a socialist revolution in the Netherlands or in Japan tomorrow, it would not turn into a Soviet-style system, especially in the socio-cultural sphere. Soviet forms of political economic organization are one thing, and are justifiably discussed, analyzed, and critiqued; social and cultural relations are something else completely, and depend upon the culture and traditions of each individual country. As the differences in sexual norms between the USSR and East Germany show, there is no one-size-fits-all model of the correct 'socialist' position on social relations.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
Loz
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Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Philosophized
Post 17 May 2014, 14:57
Quote:
Soviet forms of political economic organization are one thing, and are justifiably discussed, analyzed, and critiqued; social and cultural relations are something else completely, and depend upon the culture and traditions of each individual country.

That's just a variation of that cheap cultural relativist cop-out. In fact communism is universal and so are human rights. Obviously some societies are more and some less backwards, but it's the task of communists everywhere to take action against any leftovers of the old and rotten past.
Tradition is nothing but the baggage holding a society back.

Quote:
As the differences in sexual norms between the USSR and East Germany show, there is no one-size-fits-all model of the correct 'socialist' position on social relations.

My point is that the USSR generally didn't move in the positive direction much regarding f. ex. the equality of women and so on. I'm not talking about positions but the trend which should have been going towards the elimination of patriarchy and so on, which didn't happen at all. Compare for example the rights of women in the West in the 50s to the 80s. I don't think you had such improvements in the USSR in the same time period.
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Soviet cogitations: 4386
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Resident Soviet
Post 17 May 2014, 15:37
Loz wrote:
That's just a variation of that cheap cultural relativist cop-out. In fact communism is universal and so are human rights. Obviously some societies are more and some less backwards, but it's the task of communists everywhere to take action against any leftovers of the old and rotten past.
Tradition is nothing but the baggage holding a society back.


I think we're just going to have to agree to disagree on this point. As far as I'm concerned the jury is still out on liberal univeralist conceptions of human rights, and the first order of business is the economic superstructure, not socio-cultural norms.

Loz wrote:
My point is that the USSR generally didn't move in the positive direction much regarding f. ex. the equality of women and so on. I'm not talking about positions but the trend which should have been going towards the elimination of patriarchy and so on, which didn't happen at all. Compare for example the rights of women in the West in the 50s to the 80s. I don't think you had such improvements in the USSR in the same time period.


Again, I must disagree. When my family was first becoming acclimated to US and Canadian culture in the early 1990s, my mother and her former Soviet female friends found that a lot of the rights and general positive points of female self-identification that they had taken for granted in the USSR were seen as revolutionary and new in North America from the rights struggles of the 60s and 70s. Overall I think it would be absurd to claim that the rights of women in the West progressed while those of Soviet women remained stationary. The conservative values in regard to relationships and sex held by many in Soviet society were equally valued by men and women, given that in a sense they protected the latter from being used as mere sexual objects. Given the realities of human physiology I would make the point that it is debatable whether the sexual revolution in and of itself has improved the lives of Western women. I know for a fact that it destroyed a great deal of them -physically, emotionally and psychologically; the same thing occurred in a more brutal form in the early 90s in the Eastern Bloc, where literally millions of women were turned into commercialized pieces of meat for male sexual satisfaction.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
Soviet cogitations: 216
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Jul 2013, 05:04
Ideology: Other Leftist
Pioneer
Post 17 May 2014, 16:51
I think people often forget that many men took advantage of the Western sexual revolution to act like dogs. Women were badgered into sex by men who would lambaste them for being “prudes” if they didn’t give in.

Mick Jagger’s ex-girlfriend Marianne Faithfull has recently made some statements about how sex in the ‘60s wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/sex/10 ... ction.html

The only area where the West seems to be superior to the old East in terms of women’s liberation is in positions of power, and that is more of a class issue than a gender issue in my view. If you are an upper or upper-middle class woman in the West you are probably better off than someone would have been in the East but I am not so sure that holds true for the mass of working-class women.
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Soviet cogitations: 260
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 16 Dec 2011, 00:54
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Komsomol
Post 23 May 2014, 05:38
The USSR made great strides in attaining Gender Equality.

Sadly after WWII quite a few gains were rolled back.

I've always been Curious about an Alt History where a Female Gen Sec led the USSR.

Aleksandra Kollontai is one notable Highly Visible Soviet Politician who intrigues me.

I think she fell out of favour with Lenin though... Will have to review some of her history again.
"A shiny bauble from Capitalism is worthless when the cost is Children & the Elderly going hungry, The Infirm & Sick dying because of Greed & Education reduced to a token few to placate the masses with Illusions of freedom."
Soviet cogitations: 687
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 01 Mar 2011, 14:10
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Komsomol
Post 23 May 2014, 05:45
Kollontai was never in the Soviet leadership though. The closest woman to get to such a position was Yekaterina Furtseva, who was in the Presidium (name of the Politburo at the time) from 1957-61.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 260
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 16 Dec 2011, 00:54
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Komsomol
Post 24 May 2014, 00:09
Maybe Furtseva then?

Either way though AH allows a rejigging of Historical Events to pursue an alternate path so Kollontai could still be a viable option but obviously a less likely one.

Furtseva would allow an easier time to diverge from OTL however.
"A shiny bauble from Capitalism is worthless when the cost is Children & the Elderly going hungry, The Infirm & Sick dying because of Greed & Education reduced to a token few to placate the masses with Illusions of freedom."
Soviet cogitations: 687
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 01 Mar 2011, 14:10
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Komsomol
Post 24 May 2014, 18:06
As far as Eastern Europe goes, Elena Ceaușescu appears to have been the most influential woman, although that's obviously due to her being the wife of Nicolae. Ana Pauker was a member of the Romanian CP's Politburo from 1948-52. The Party of Labour of Albania's Politburo had three women in it, Liri Gega (executed in 1956 as a Titoist), Liri Belishova (expelled in 1960 for divulging information to the Soviet revisionists; she's still alive and an anti-communist nowadays), and Lenka Çuko (from 1981 onwards.)
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