Money Shot chronicles the African American porn industry's steady rise to the mainstream. Lawrence Ross, a prominent journalist and lecturer, details a year in the life of porn star Lexington Steele, whose eleven-inch penis and 75,000 per-movie-fee made him one of the most famous figures in the porn industry. Beginning and ending with Lexington Steele as the book's narrative thread, Ross conducts hundreds of interviews with college professors, industry insiders, and porn stars themselves, providing an insider's view of the often dangerous and disheartening reality of the black porn industry. His research uncovers a world fraught with sexual and racial politics. He describes an AIDS crisis that threatens the lives and careers of several black porn stars, the racism that implicitly prohibits interracial sex scenes in porn films, the moral implications of black female porn stars working as escorts to wealthy African Americans, and much more. Money Shot humanizes those who participate in a largely inhumane occupation—it is a cautionary tale for those who thought that what they are seeing on the screen is simply sex.
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Lawrence C. Ross, Jr., is the author of The Divine Nine: The History of African American Fraternities and Sororities, which was a Los Angeles Times, Essence Magazine, and Blackboard Magazine bestseller, and The Ways of Black Folks: A Year in the Life of a People. His writing has appeared in newspapers throughout the country.From Publishers Weekly:
In this intriguing account, Ross offers closeups on the lives and dreams of black porn actors. Combining interviews with personal observations and some theoretical gloss, Ross travels to the San Fernando Valley (center of the porn industry), an Adult Entertainment Expo in Vegas and a swinger's party in Oakland. The African-American niche commands about 10% of the multibillion-dollar porn market, and performers with names like Lexington Steele, Sinnamon Love and Sledge Hammer discuss their schemes to carve out a piece of it (as with the mainstream movie business, many actors hope to produce and direct). Ross gets good interviews and his straightforward prose suits the material: Just like hog butchers who use every part of the pig 'from the rooter to the tooter,' porn exploits every part of the body to make a profit. The most graphic and disturbing episode is that of a female performer who prides herself on not doing anal (I think I'm too cute for that) but then allows herself to be beaten and humiliated in a scene by white men. There are many subgenres, writes Ross, but white men overtly degrading black women are some of the most popular. (Oct.)
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