Some feminists and psychologists  argue that sexual objectification can lead to negative psychological effects including eating disorders , depression and sexual dysfunction , and can give women negative self-images because of the belief that their intelligence and competence are currently not being, nor will ever be, acknowledged by society.
In the French Enlightenment , for example, there was a debate as to whether a woman's breasts were merely a sensual enticement or rather a natural gift. Since then, it has been argued that the phenomenon of female sexual objectification has increased drastically since its problematization in all levels of life, and has resulted in negative consequences for women, especially in the political sphere. However, a rising form of new third-waver feminist groups have also taken the increased objectification of women as an opportunity to use the female body as a mode of power.
Twin Peaks has skimpily dressed waitresses, and is thus an example of breastaurant. Ariel Levy contends that Western women who exploit their sexuality by, for example, wearing revealing clothing and engaging in lewd behavior, engage in female self-objectification, meaning they objectify themselves.
While some women see such behaviour as a form of empowerment , Levy contends that it has led to greater emphasis on a physical criterion or sexualization for women's perceived self-worth, which Levy calls " raunch culture ".
Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture. Levy followed the camera crew from the Girls Gone Wild video series, and argues that contemporary America's sexualized culture not only objectifies women, it encourages women to objectify themselves. Sexual objectification of men[ edit ] Feminist authors Christina Hoff Sommers and Naomi Wolf write that women's sexual liberation led women to a role reversal , whereby they viewed men as sex objects,    in a manner similar to what they criticize about men's treatment of women.
Psychologist Harold Lyon suggests that men's liberation is a necessary step toward woman's liberation. Within gay male communities, men are often objectified by other men. Discussing negative effects of objectification is met with considerable resistance in the community. The sexual objectification of men of color may force them to play specific roles in sexual encounters that are not necessarily of their own choosing.
It is known as "Six-pack Advertising," where men are seen as sexual objects. Because of society's established gaze on the objectification of women, the newfound objectification of men is not as widespread. Even with this increase of male objectification, males are still seen as the dominant figures and so the focus is still primarily on women.
Similar to the issues of sexual objectification in women, it is common for said objectification to lead men to body shaming, eating disorders, and a drive for perfection. Men in the media are especially pressured to take part in steroid use in order to meet the standard of beauty set by body evaluation. The continued exposure of these "ideal" men subject society to expect all men to fit this role. These men often fill the leading roles.
When society is subjected to men who do not have ideal bodies, we typically see them as the comic relief. It is rare to see an out of shape man have a leading role. The idealized version of a woman is thin Aubrey, pg.
The concept of body evaluation is more common in criticizing women. However, body evaluation revolves more towards nonverbal cues for men. It is more common in women because sexual, sometimes offensive, verbal remarks are directed towards women. Men, on the other hand, experience more body evaluation through gazing and other nonverbal cues. Gazing is simply the way in which depict men from an idealized perspective. Men tend to experience this from other men, whereas women experience it from both sexes.
This leads to other things like eating disorders, body shaming, and anxiety. The ISOS scale can be related to objectification theory and sexism. Men typically experience it through media display. The difference is that men typically do not experience the negative effects to the extent that women do. Gaze While the concept of sexual objectification is important within feminist theory, ideas vary widely on what constitutes sexual objectification and what are the ethical implications of such objectification.
Some feminists such as Naomi Wolf find the concept of physical attractiveness itself to be problematic,  with some radical feminists being opposed to any evaluation of another person's sexual attractiveness based on physical characteristics. In their view however, the increase in the sexual objectification of both sexes in Western culture is one of the negative legacies of the sexual revolution.
Camille Paglia holds that "[t]urning people into sex objects is one of the specialties of our species. She continues that women are their bodies as well as their minds and souls, and so focusing on a single aspect should not be "degrading".
The specific problem is: The prose is jargon-filled, repetitive and nearly impenetrable to laypeople. The structure needs improvement. January Objectification theory is a framework for understanding the experiences of women in cultures that sexual objectify them, proposed by Barbara Fredrickson and Tomi-Ann Roberts in Women, they explain, begin to view their bodies as objects separate from their person.
This internalization has been termed self-objectification. This self-objectification then, according to objectification theory, leads to increased habitual body monitoring. With this framework in mind, Fredrickson and Roberts suggest explanations for consequences they believe are the result of sexual objectification. The consequences suggested are: Sexual objectification has been studied based on the proposition that girls and women develop their primary view of their physical selves from observing others.
These observations can take place in the media or through personal experience. The sexual objectification and self-objectification of women is believed to influence social gender roles and inequalities between the sexes. Therefore, when individuals know others are looking at them, or will be looking at them, they are more likely to care about their physical appearance. Examples of the enhanced presence of an observer include the presence of an audience, camera, or other known observer.
Women, girls, and self-objectification[ edit ] Primarily, objectification theory describes how women and girls are influenced as a result of expected social and gender roles. This, in turn, can lead to many serious problems in women and girls, including "body shame, anxiety, negative attitudes toward menstruation, a disrupted flow of consciousness, diminished awareness of internal bodily states, depression, sexual dysfunction, and disordered eating.
In essence, an individual loses their identity, and is recognized solely by the physical characteristics of their body. Psychological consequences[ edit ] Objectification theory suggests both direct and indirect consequences of objectification to women. Indirect consequences include self consciousness in terms that a woman is consistently checking or rearranging her clothes or appearance to ensure that she is presentable.
More direct consequences are related to sexual victimization. Rape and sexual harassment are examples of this. This may constitute sexual jokes or comments, most of which are degrading. Thus, women will engage in actions meant to change their body such as dieting, exercise, eating disorders, cosmetic surgery , etc.
Causes of depression[ edit ] Learned helplessness theory posits that because human bodies are only alterable to a certain point, people develop a sense of body shame and anxiety from which they create a feeling of helplessness in relation to correcting their physical appearance and helplessness in being able to control the way in which others perceive their appearance.
This lack of control often results in depression. Since the dependence on another's evaluation limits a woman's ability to create her own positive experiences and motivation, it adversely increases her likelihood for depression. Specifically, victimization within the workplace degrades women.
Harassment experienced every day wears on a woman, and sometimes this results in a state of depression.