You know that heavy stare you feel without even having to witness a man’s hungry eyes on your gorgeous backside? As it turns out, there’s science behind the stare of objectification.
HuffPost Women reports that a recent study published in the European Journal of Social Psychology found that the human brain processes images of women in parts and men as whole. Well, hell.
Study author Sarah Gervais, a psychologist at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln suggested, “Everyday, ordinary women are being reduced to their sexual body parts. This isn’t just something that supermodels or porn stars have to deal with.” Tell us something we don’t already know. Psst! My eyes are up here.
One study experiment examined both global and local mental processing, in other words, how the brain identifies images in whole and in parts. Using 227 undergraduate students, study participants viewed non-sexual full body images of men and women. They were then offered two side-by-side photographs, one being the original image, and the other being a modified version of the original image with slight alternations to the chest or waist, as both body parts were defined as sexual. Participants were then asked to identify which image they’d seen before.
Overall, both men and women were better at identifying women’s individual body parts than men’s. And with that we learn female objectification is not just a male thing. Yep, ladies are just as guilty of viewing their fellow women in parts. Enter estrogen soul crush.
Study researcher Gervais believes the media plays a role, “Women’s bodies and their body parts are used to sell all sorts of products, but we are now for everyday, ordinary women, processing them in a similar way.” So there you have it; we can blame the media. Pssh, I feel so much better now.
Hey, ya think that man fined for eyeing a woman’s tush plans to plea biology? I wonder.
What are your thoughts on the study findings?
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