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Historisk tidskrift 129:3 • 2009

Innehåll (Contents) 2009:3

Uppsatser (Articles)

Porren inför lagen. Två fallstudier angående den officiella attityden till offentligt visad pornografisk film 1921 och 1971

Tommy Gustafsson och Mariah Larsson

Fulltext (pdf)


Porn before the law: Two case studies regarding the official attitude towards the public screening of pornographic film in 1921 and 1971

In this article, two case studies from 1921–1922 and 1971 respectively, are jux- taposed in order to determine change in official attitudes and screening contexts for pornographic films. Focusing in the first case on an exhibitor who in 1922 was convicted of screening an obscene film on three occasions the year before, and in the other case on the range of venues for pornographic films in Malmö the month before the removal of the obscenity clause from the penal code in Swedish law, the authors conclude that public but secret screenings of clandestinely circulated films for all-male audiences did take place in 1921. The question can be raised as to whether women also sometimes attended. In 1971, however, one could see semi- pornographic feature films in regular cinemas and hardcore short films at so called sex clubs which also featured strip and live shows. Referring to a survey published in 1969, in which a slight majority of the informants were against pornography, the authors finally argue that perhaps the authorities had undergone the greatest transformation in attitude, whereas the general public only changed their views slightly between 1921 and 1971.


film history, pornographic films, screening contexts, sex clubs, stag films, Swedish penal code