Pornografia revolves around two old men visiting a country estate in the occupied Poland of 1943. They become entranced and obsessed by the seductiveness of youth. They observe with maniacal anmd indecent precision the actions and motives of Henia, their host's adolescent daughter, and Karol, the local bailiff's son. They insinuate, detect, analyze and dissect what they see as a physical attraction between them, and plot a culmination of their (imagined) love. While they become engrossed in the goings-on of the household, their own personalities are submerged and altered - they become victims of their own obsessions.
In this terse philosophical novel, Gombrowicz deals with an unexpected kind of seduction: the seduction of age by youth. Pornografia mixes elements of the pastoral romance with the melodramatic farce, the political thriller and the murder mystery, creating speech that silently subverts itself, as the uncontrolled play of power and desire bursts into the ordered world of adulthood.