Thursday, February 19, 2009

a big duh: naked objectification

From the Guardian, a report of a study on photos that objectify women.

Men are more likely to think of women as objects if they have looked at sexy pictures of females beforehand, psychologists said yesterday.

Researchers used brain scans to show that when straight men looked at pictures of women in bikinis, areas of the brain that normally light up in anticipation of using tools, like spanners and screwdrivers, were activated.

Scans of some of the men found that a part of the brain associated with empathy for other peoples' emotions and wishes shut down after looking at the pictures.

Susan Fiske, a psychologist at Princeton University in New Jersey, said the changes in brain activity suggest sexy images can shift the way men perceive women, turning them from people to interact with, to objects to act upon.

(Thanks, Cindy.)

This is a big duh. Women have been saying this for ages. At least now there's some data to back up our practical knowledge. Just as there is now data (it cost $5 million to assemble, if I recall correctly) proving that toast always falls on the floor butter-side down.

Tell me you didn't think I was going to use a picture of a scantily-clad model for this post...

This blog has moved. My blog now lives here: