No. 11 (2016): Emotions, Normativity, and Social Life
Session 3. Emotions, Language, and Hate Speech

Silencing Speech with Pornography

Published January 4, 2017
  • silencing,
  • speech acts,
  • pornography,
  • misrecognition
How to Cite
Caponetto, L. (2017). Silencing Speech with Pornography. Phenomenology and Mind, (11), 182-191.


The aim of this paper is to offer a map of the dynamics through which pornography may silence women’s illocutions. Drawing on Searle’s speech act theory, I will take illocutionary forces as sets of conditions for success. The different types of silencing, I claim, originate from the hearer’s missed recognition of a specific component of the force of the speaker’s act. In addition to the varieties already discussed in literature (which I label essential, authority, and sincerity silencing), I shall finally consider another kind of silencing produced by the failure to acknowledge the speaker’s words as serious (seriousness silencing).


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