Interesting, but I just read the article in question in Penthouse
and it is still not what you are painting it as. This was not an article written by him, he is being quoted in an article and at various times he isn't being quoted directly. Penthouse was not always "pornographic" and to characterise it as that is just to demonise and imply that the article as being far more overtly sexual that it was. This is from wiki, a Penthouse cover from 1969
and here's one
from 1977. Apparently in 1998 there was a move to more hardcore porn content and to be less of a general mens magazine that happened to show some girls in it. More like the equivalent of Cosmo
or maybe a magazine like FHM
so its not exactly scholarly reporting but certainly not "pornographic" either.
We also have to assume the quotes are verbatim and characterised accurately. It seems to me that he was being academic in his reporting, as far as I can tell. He seemed to be saying that when talking to those who experienced incest in their childhood many of them didnt seem to be as negatively affected as we would think or assume they would be, and in a small minority of cases (6 out of 200) that it even seemed to be a positive experience. He is also skeptical of reports from fathers, the article writes, "However, Farrell has become increasingly skeptical of reports from fathers, for they are seldom confirmed by daughters
". It also quotes him as saying that he is afraid of printing his findings as it might lead to more abuse from men towards women by misrepresenting what he found, ""In a society where men are powerful and exploitive and insensitive to women's feelings, which is reinforced by female adaptiveness and a daughter's lack of power, data like these can be used as an excuse for the continuation and magnification of that exploitation. When I consider that, I almost don't want to write the book."
He says that therapists often tell those who experienced incest that they were definitely damaged by it no matter what, this may not always be the best approach and could even cause problems, " I'm finding that thousands of people in therapy for incest are being told, in essence, that their lives have been ruined by incest. In fact, their lives have not generally been affected as much by the incest as by the overall atmosphere...As soon as society gets into the picture, they have to tell themselves it was bad. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy."
" In other words, his view is that the "overall atmosphere" toward incest can be more damaging to someone than the actual acts themselves and so this should be taken into account when dealing with those who have experienced it.
Its also worth pointing out that Farrell was still considered a well regarded feminist at the time so in that sense I guess we must also say that feminism was also promoting incest, if we're going to use this logic. Only when his views started to drift from their own did they realise they needed to find something on him they could use against him.
I also found this in response to peoples allegations of him promoting incest: