A profile of Candy Barr–porn star pioneer, burlesque legend, and Texas folk hero.
Wednesday, April 4
Monday, April 2
Friday, February 24
How the former U.N. weapon’s inspector and “loudest and most credible skeptic of the Bush administration’s contention that Hussein was hiding weapons of mass destruction” ended up embroiled in an Internet sex scandal involving underage girls.
Friday, February 10
Monday, February 6
The 34-year-old virgin father-of-15 at the forefront of the controversial DIY sperm donation movement.
Saturday, January 28
The explosion of publishing created a much more democratic and permanent network of public communication than had ever existed before. The mass proliferation of newspapers and magazines, and a new-found fascination with the boundaries of the private and the public, combined to produce the first age of sexual celebrity.
Tuesday, January 17
In a dark echo of Rear Window, a wheelchair-bound hacker seizes control of hundreds of webcams, most of them aimed at young women’s beds.
Monday, January 2
The dissolution of Brooklyn softcore skin-mag Jacques and the marriage of the couple that created it.
Friday, December 23
What makes soap interesting? Why choose one brand over another? Dichter’s first contract was with the Compton Advertising Agency, to help them sell Ivory soap. Market research typically involved asking shoppers questions like “Why do you use this brand of soap?” Or, more provocatively, “Why don’t you use this brand of soap?” Regarding such lines of inquiry as useless, Dichter instead conducted a hundred so-called “depth interviews”, or open-ended conversations, about his subjects’ most recent scrubbing experiences. The approach was not unlike therapy, with Dichter mining the responses for encoded, unconscious motives and desires. In the case of soap, he found that bathing was a ritual that afforded rare moments of personal indulgence, particularly before a romantic date (“You never can tell,” explained one woman). He discerned an erotic element to bathing, observing that “one of the few occasions when the puritanical American [is] allowed to caress himself or herself [is] while applying soap.” As for why customers picked a particular brand, Dichter concluded that it wasn’t exactly the smell or price or look or feel of the soap, but all that and something else besides—that is, the gestalt or “personality” of the soap.
Monday, December 19
Thursday, November 17
On Al Vernacchio, the best sex ed teacher in America.
Thursday, November 10
Years of guilt and shame over an obsession with hardcore porn drives the Orthodox Jewish-raised author to meet the the personalities behind the darkest and most distrurbing X-rated subgenres and ask, “Do you ever feel guilty?”