Women as sex objects is the title of a podcast from the Scientific American website. I found it interesting. Of course, the title alone might intrigue us but what I found interesting was a bit deeper. Not laid out in black and white was the details of the study, its methodology. This is important.
In a CNN report I found a bit more detail. What was implied in the podcast was confirmed in the CNN report: only males viewing bikini clad women were studied. This is important. You cannot make any real judgments by studying a tiny sample of any population. Well, you can, but they will be highly questionable.
There were a number of comments at the podcast site. The majority seemed to be suspicious of the study. Some thought it pointless (as in "Duh! What were you expecting??") and some saw value. I am with the majority.
Of course men will objectify women in that context (pretty and bikini clad). There's nothing surprising in that. As one commenter stated, what about the message implied by the woman posing in the bikini? Isn't there an intent to be objectified? We learn in the CNN report that Professor Fiske was looking beyond the study toward examining how this objectification in this context might spill over into, say, behavior or perception of women in the workplace.
I am reminded of all those cartoons I saw (mostly in my father's girlie magazines) of men with imagining women they see passing by as naked. Oddly, I have never done that... probably a poor graphic imagination factor in my brain. Not that I cannot conjure up such an image but that I don't do it with the random female I see, no matter how pretty. I digress... sigh.
I suppose the 21 males enjoyed themselves anyway.
I wonder if this study was done with federal grant money?
A Night Unremembered
6 years ago