Etown Professor Writes Book on Erotica Culture

Image by: Mike Moss

While checking out the bookshelf of faculty-written books at the Elizabethtown College Store, one book cover may especially catch your attention. A female is posed, her teeth vivaciously clenched around a strawberry.

Boldly written upon the cover is the title, “The Porning of America: The Rise of Porn Culture, What It Means, and Where We Go from Here.” This new book is written by Etown English professor Dr. Carmine Sarracino, and former Etown professor Dr. Kevin M. Scott. It is published by Beacon Press.

“It’s not porn. It’s a book about porn,” Sarracino clearly illustrates. He teaches a class called “Growing Up in America,” which allows students to discover the values and experiences of living in an American society through literature and discussion.

 “It’s not possible to study America without thinking a lot about the influence of porn in America,” Sarracino explains. “After discussion with Kevin, we thought we should do a book about this.” 

“The Porning of America” reveals the history of pornographic material, and argues that the subject has become mainstream in our society. In all aspects of our culture – fashion, entertainment, advertising, and even politics, porn has naturally absorbed into our brain. 

Sue Smith, the Textbook Manager at the Elizabethtown College Store, while not having yet read the book, maintains a positive outlook toward the work these men have done.  

“I don’t see anything wrong with it,” Smith says. “We carry copies of all books faculty write.”

Sarracino and Scott compile a lot of information on the matter in this comprehensive book, and also profile a couple of “porn exemplars” – individuals who have been leaders of mainstreaming porn into our culture, such as Snoop Dogg, Jenna Jameson and Paris Hilton.

“Kevin knew a lot about men’s magazines and comics from the 1940s. He was really a good partner in the whole thing,” Sarracino stated. 

Some may see the book as controversial, but the authors strive to make this a thoughtful and honest evaluation on how porn has had an influential effect on American culture.

“We do get questioned on some things too risqué,” Smith affirmed. “Sometimes the Brethren come in and have concerns about the books.” 

Sarracino is an author of three books of poetry and teaches several courses on American literature and poetry at Elizabethtown College. Scott, while not longer teaching at Elizabethtown College, has written many scholarly articles on literature, art, and popular culture. 

The book is now available at the Elizabethtown College Book Store, and at online bookstores such as Amazon and Borders. An official release of “The Porning of America” is set for September 29, 2008.


Further Reading:
You may also find the following blog posts interesting, as both Sarracino and Scott contribute their knowledge in the same subject area in these blog posts on Beacon Broadside, a project of Beacon Press.

     “Dirty” Porn: The Flip Side of Puritanism – by Carmine Sarracino
     The Porning of Miley Cyrus – by Kevin M. Scott


Author: Mike Moss, Etown College senior

Jay Walk into Etown

This year, Etown welcomes the Jay Walk, a $2.8 million crosswalk currently in construction to link the Brossman Commons and Thompson Gymnasium. The new addition is an indoor hallway that will stand between the already established BSC and gym. 

The purpose of the Jay Walk is two-fold. First, it serves as a more convenient way for students to travel across campus. Secondly, it will house a hall of fame for student athletes.

“The primary purpose is to connect various parts of campus,” Marianne Calenda, Dean of Students, said. “It is a pedestrian space that will always be open between the BSC and the gym.”

In years past, students had to navigate a winding trail between the BSC and the Thompson Gymnasium. Often, the students encountered locked doors halfway through the passageway.

“Students had to weave like mice through a maze,” Nancy Latimore, Director of Athletics said.

Etown junior John Mackey agreed. “You kind of went upstairs, across and downstairs, was it? It was kind of weird.”

The Jay Walk is a shorter and more direct route between the BSC and gym. The old winding hallway is eliminated. The Jay Walk has entrances on either side of the building, one near the Masters Center and the other by Brinser Field. Now, the academic and residential communities are linked through the Jay Walk’s halls.

While the administrators built the Jay Walk to aid student body, some students know little about the project. “I didn’t know that there was one,” Leslie Furman, a senior, said. “I had no idea what they were doing.”

Other students, such as sophomore Jamie Bartolino, are more informed. “Rumor has it that space will be used for a Hall of Fame. I thought that’s a really great idea.”

The second purpose of the Jay Walk is to create a more appropriate space to commemorate student athletes. Currently, the only recognition they have is found in faded photos scattered across the gymnasium.

“We never had a nice hall of fame—I’ve been embarrassed of what we have had in the past,” Latimore said. “I don’t think we’ve done a good job with trophies. Most Division III don’t have four national championship teams in their history. Most schools don’t even have one.”

The Jay Walk will include a Hall of Fame out cove that will better display past athletes. “It is going to be a great way to highlight accomplishments of student athletes and for alumni to connect with current athletes, Calenda said.

Construction on the Jay Walk began in Spring Semester 2008 and is expected to be completed by January 30, 2009.

Author: Andrea Guzzo

New students start year with rowdy behavior

In lieu of President Theodore Long’s fight for the Amethyst Initiative, some new students are proving that it may not be an appropriate action to take.

Within the first two weeks of classes, students have abused alcohol to the point where they scare Elizabethtown community members and are arrested and still others who jeopardize their athletic careers to have a “good time.”

According to Dale Boyer, Assistant Director of Campus Security, a first-year student who was staggering back to campus from an off-campus party and scaring two women as he walked through their yards was arrested by local police.  A breathalyzer test revealed that said student’s blood alcohol content was over .20, four times the legal limit for an underage drinker.  When asked how this year’s problems with underage drinking compares to problems from previous years, Boyer said, “it’s too early to tell.”

Ober Dormitory Resident Assistant Christopher Care said that they’ve already busted one first-year student for drinking alcohol, while Chelsea Kempchinsky, a Resident Assistant in the Myer Dormitory, said there have already been a lot of damages.

Junior David Breidenstine said he’s seen a lot of students getting in trouble already this year.

“After the first-year students moved in, I saw three of them sitting on a corner while Campus Security officials talked to them.  There have also been tons of off campus parties and lots of cops around town and on campus.”

Junior Mike Steiner added that eight first-year lacrosse players were busted for drinking during the first week of school.

While Long could not be scheduled for an immediate interview, he did send a memo to the student body and their parents, summing up the behavior of students who involve themselves in underage drinking and how the administration and staff are attempting to diminish it.

“… I have seen first-hand how current law undermines our effectiveness in educating for responsibility and fosters unhealthy and harmful behavior by our students.”

“… I want to promote less drinking and more responsible choices among our students, and … I believe that together we can learn from one another how to better achieve those common ends,” Long wrote.

While many first-year students have been busted, arrested and berated, some are still hopeful that this year will be different from years past.  Junior Elizabeth Baker, an office assistant of the Resident Life office agrees with Boyer, “It’s still too early to tell how this year will unfold.”

Author:  Jennifer L. Tarr

Higher education in a third world country

After thirty-five hours of travel, Karen Hodges finally made it Myanmar, more commonly known as Burma.  Hodges is the Coordinator of the Religious Life program of Elizabethtown College and went on her fifth trip with New Community Project, a non-profit organization. 

During the ten day trip Hodges group went to different villages and visited victims of the Cyclone Nargis that hit Burma back in May.

The purpose of the trip was to help the children that had lost everything after the cyclone had hit.  Hodges, who traveled with five others, including adjunct Professor David Radcliff, raised money so that the children could have school kits. 

Hodge’s raised $3,000 for the children.  The school kits cost only $20 and included: a backpack, one textbook, an exercise book, one uniform, pencils, an umbrella, and the tuition.  Each $20 helps one child go to school for one school year.  Hodges generous gift helped 150 children go to school. 

 “The military is in charge of the government,” Hodges explained.  “They aren’t allowing relief.”  Because of this, the members believed it was very important make the arrangements and help the people of this country. 

During the day the group would visit some of the children in school.  Some of them had become orphans after losing all of their family members to the cyclone. 

“It was so sad to hear their stories of how they lost their families and loved ones,” Hodges said.  “No child should have to see what they saw.”

The group assisted these children in many different ways.  They helped these children go to school, who may not have had the opportunity otherwise.  They also found a way for the children to escape from their everyday lives, by singing and playing with them. 

“We take for granted so many things and I really found a new appreciation,” Hodges said.  “I’ve learned from these trips you don’t need these modern conveniences to be happy.”

“This was my fifth trip with the group and I would certainly love to go back and help again,” Hodges said.

For more information about Hodge’s trip contact or visit for information on New Community Project.


 Reported By: Keira Feagley, Elizabethtown College Junior

Campus Security Finds Early Parking Problems

You see them all around campus.  Those little orange envelopes in car windshields that bring so much frustration and disappointment to numerous Elizabethtown students.

That’s right, we’re talking about parking tickets.

The beginning of a new school year always brings lots of questions about parking locations and regulations, especially from first year students. And that’s where Campus Security comes in.

“There’s plenty of parking available on a normal day,” Assistant Director of Campus Security Dale Boyer said. “If everyone’s parking where they’re supposed to, there’s plenty of parking.”

Campus Security has several methods of trying to ensure that everyone knows where they’re supposed to park that are enacted right in the beginning of the year.

First of all, students should be registering their cars with Campus Security before they start parking on campus. When they do so, they receive a pamphlet detailing all the parking regulations and where they are allowed to park, according to their class.

Boyer said that vehicle registration is often where first year students make their first mistake.  Sometimes students don’t know how to register thier cars.  Instructions, registration forms, and a copy of the Parking Regulations pamphlet can be found on Campus Security’s website, but some students simply don’t think to look there.

Additionally, some students think that if they don’t register their cars, then Campus Security has no way of finding out who they are to charge them for the ticket.

“We’ll start looking up their plates,” Boyer said. Even unregistered cars can be ticketed by Campus Security.

Another thing that often confuses the first years is the weekend parking policy.

Over the weekend—from 4:00pm Friday until 2:00am Monday—first year and sophomore students are permitted to park in almost any spaces on campus. Unfortunately, not all students know which spaces are off-limits.

The Brinser Lot, for example, is only for faculty and staff parking, every single day. And the borough streets are not part of the campus. A Zone 2 parking permit is required to park there.  Again, all of these rules can be found in Campus Security’s Parking Regulations pamphlet.

But despite what some may like to believe, Campus Security isn’t out to take students’ money from the second they get to campus.

In fact, Campus Security doesn’t even give any tickets during the first week. Only warnings, informing the car’s owner of their parking violation. Boyer said they’ve given out about 200 warnings this year.

Unfortunately, Boyer said this doesn’t help as much as it could. When he announced the warnings at a Student Senate meeting, the first thing asked by the upper classmen was how long they’d be able to continue being parked illegally before the ticketing began.

Remember those 200 warnings that were given out? Only two of them were to first year students.

Boyer said there doesn’t seem to be much that can be done to reduce the parking violations. Not even when the parking fines were doubled two years ago.

“The fines weren’t doing what they were intended to do, which is correct the behavior,” Boyer said. “It did not even make a dent in student parking.”

But even Boyer admits that it’s not just the fault of the students. While there may be plenty of parking on a normal day, that all changes when there’s a sporting event. As spectators take spaces in places like the Hackman lot, students returning to campus later in the day have nowhere to park.

“I think it would behoove the college to make some accessible parking for sporting events,” Boyer said.

And while he says there is some new parking in the works for near the baseball and softball field, he says it won’t be enough for other kinds of sporting events.

Boyer said that Campus Security gives out about 1500 or so parking tickets each year.

Author:  Sara Sandhaus, Elizabethtown College senior

Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania Citizen Journalism