Consent and Sexualized Leisure in Sin City: Observations from a U.S. Pornography Expo in Las Vegas

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Abstract

This article deploys a sexualized leisure framework to analyze the management of consent at the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo (AEE), one of the largest and longest running conventions in the mainstream U.S. porn industry. Drawing on field observations in this naturalistic setting and observers post-Expo reflections, we explore the complexities of consent in a porn tourism scene. We corroborate our qualitative analysis with survey findings (n = 433). Taken together, our findings indicate attendees—who are largely white, straight, cisgender men—attend AEE to socialize in a sexual atmosphere. We conclude that consent was managed, specific to a touristic sexuality. This challenges anti-porn assertions that consent is impossible or improbable in sexualized spaces.

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Jackson, C. A., Maginn, P. J., Baldwin, A., & Brents, B. G. (2020). Consent and Sexualized Leisure in Sin City: Observations from a U.S. Pornography Expo in Las Vegas. Leisure Sciences, 42(3–4), 393–410. https://doi.org/10.1080/01490400.2020.1712280

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