Porn star Madison Young: Making

Published: October 18, 2010

I’ve written countless times about the push to mandate condoms in the porn industry and yet, when news broke last week of another HIV outbreak, I was reminded that I’m still not sure where I stand on the issue. As a feminist, I’m inclined to listen to what sex workers want, and what makes them feel safe and empowered — but porn actors aren’t a monolithic group. Some say that requiring condoms is the only way to go; others argue that a mandate would not only hurt their performance but also put them at greater risk of infection (see more on that here).

In my ongoing quest for something resembling clarity on the issue, I went to feminist porn star and director — yes, those mythical creatures do exist — Madison Young. The fiery-haired 30-year-old describes herself as a "sexual revolutionary" (indeed, she started San Francisco’s Femina Potens Art Gallery, which targets those "living outside the female-male gender binary") and "one of the world’s kinkiest feminists." I talked to her by e-mail about responsible pornography, condoms as a fantasy-killer and whether it’s safe to have crossover between the gay and straight sides of the industry .

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