Varieties of religious and pornographic experience: latent growth in adolescents’ religiosity and pornography use (2018)

Cranney, Stephen, Goran Koletić, and Aleksandar Štulhofer.

The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion (2018).

Received 31 Jan 2018, Accepted 21 May 2018,


The relationship between adolescent religiosity and pornography use has been longitudinally tested only in the USA. Given the social relevance of hypothesized mechanisms underlying the association, this study offers a three-wave longitudinal assessment of parallel latent growth in the two constructs carried out in a South European country. Using responses of 1,041 Croatian adolescents from the capital city (Mage = 16.14 years, SD = .45; 64.6% of female students) and latent growth curve modeling approach, we explored links between individual trajectories of change in religiosity and pornography use over a period of 24 months. In the observed period, religiosity decreased and pornography use increased among both male and female adolescents, but their dynamics were independent of each other—pointing to other (unmeasured) processes responsible for both adolescents’ sexualization and secularization. Importantly, the findings also pointed to an important role of age at first exposure to pornography for its frequency of use in middle to late adolescence.

KEYWORDS: Adolescentsreligiosityfaithpornography uselongitudinal