Sexual Objectification, Part 1: What is it?
This is Part 1 of a four-part series on sexual objectification–what it is and how to respond to it. The phrase “sexual objectification” has been around since the 1970s, but the phenomenon is more rampant than ever in popular culture–and we now know that it causes real harm. What exactly is it, though? If objectification is the process of representing or treating a person like an object, then sexual objectification is the process of representing or treating a person like a sex object, one that serves another’s sexual pleasure. How do we know sexual objectification when we see it? Building on the work of Nussbaum and Langton, I’ve devised the Sex Object Test (SOT) to measure the presence of sexual objectification in images. 1) Does the image show only part(s) of a sexualized person’s body? Headless women, for example, make it easy to see them as only a body by erasing the individuality communicated through faces, eyes and eye contact: Covering up a woman’s face works well, too:
Related: Objectivation sexuelle 2
• Hypersexualisation et normes de beauté