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Belle Knox interview from Elle Magazine

The iconic fashion magazine Elle has just posted a rather insightful interview with the Duke Porn Star, Belle Knox. It’s a great interview, but I still can’t help but wonder how in the world she has time for all these appearances around the world, interviews on TV shows, magazines and filming XXX shoots, when she is supposed to be in class. Isn’t her claim to fame that she’s from Duke University?


When Duke University freshman Miriam Weeks shot her first porn scene last November to pay her $60,000 a year tuition, little did she know her porn alter ego, Belle Knox, would soon make international headlines. But after a fellow student outed her to the entire student body, the outspoken women’s studies major turned a potential worst case scenario into a newfound career: She’s appeared on The View, secured a summer internship at Pornhub (which is exactly what it sounds like), and is working on both a book deal and a line of “molded body part” sex toys—all while on track to graduate with the class of 2017. We Skyped with Weeks about porn stereotypes, Duke’s conservative culture, and how she’s “shattering stereotypes” one X-rated film at a time:

How did you get into this line of work?

I was looking for ways to pay for college. I saw you could make a couple thousand dollars each time with porn. I applied to a bunch of agencies, and within days I was getting callbacks

Were you surprised at how easy it was?

Totally. I didn’t know how girls got into porn. I thought maybe they were at the mall and some agent guy scouted them. It was as easy as sending in my pictures, but girls, don’t get any ideas! I am not trying to be anybody’s role model.

How did you feel doing your first shoot?

Super awkward. The photographer was this older guy. I felt really weird about him watching me have sex, but I got into it and I ended up feeling super exhilarated. I left the scene feeling like I had done a good honest day’s work.

Is there anything you wish that you had known before you shot that first scene?

That people would find out. I probably would have told my family and friends. I would have been more careful about my identity. But I didn’t want my family to feel guilty that they couldn’t pay. It was my burden.

How do you think that the fact that you go to Duke versus, say, UCLA, has played into the reaction?

We’re in the Bible Belt. Add in the stereotype that girls who do porn are stupid blonde bimbos, then me coming out and being so articulate. I shatter those stereotypes. But also Tasha Reign goes to UCLA and nobody cares because UCLA is so tolerant towards her. It’s the college culture of Duke mixed in with preconceived notions of what porn stars are like.

What would improve the status of porn stars and sex workers?

First I’d like to see the decriminalization of prostitution. Sex workers should be given equal protection under the law. I want our jobs to be treated as legitimate. Right now, if I were to go to a policeman and report something that happened to me, he would say, “You’re a prostitute, I don’t care.”

What advice would you give a college student going into porn?

Don’t keep it a secret from the people closest to you. Don’t try to live a double life because it ends up being incredibly isolating and very mentally draining.

Are you more comfortable now that you’re out?

It’s bittersweet because the entire world knows what I do, but it’s freeing to not have to lie to my parents anymore.

I’m curious what kind of sex education you got [in Catholic school].

In eighth grade a sex educator told us sex was a sin. If you had sex you’d get pregnant or die of HIV. Nobody ever told me, “This is how you use a condom, this is how you use birth control.” I was always told, “Don’t have sex.” That made me want to rebel a little bit.

What is a typical Saturday night like for you?

I’m usually doing an appearance or working. I don’t go out like I used to. I know if I go out I’m going to be bombarded with glares and hostility.

Are you single?

I am. I’ve been single forever. You know what sucks about this whole thing? There’s all these guys watch my porn who probably lust after me, but I can’t get a guy to ask me on a date.

Have you gotten support from students on campus?

Maybe 70% of students support me and like me, then there’s 30% of people who hate me and want me to die.

Do you have any role models in the porn world?

Sasha Grey is my porn idol; she’s so intelligent and articulate yet so naughty. I really like Annie Sprinkle. She was the first porn girl to get a Ph.D. and she’s a really well respected feminist activist.

What’s the biggest misconception about you?

That porn was a desperate exchange. Any type of labor exchange is a desperate exchange at its core. I researched heavily before I entered it. Porn was never a last resort. I was not naïve, I was not exploited into it. I chose of my own free will to do it. It’s as simple as that.

Source: Elle magazine

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