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young women are so sexualised and image-conscious that they lack intellectual confidence...

(17 Posts)
tabouleh Sun 28-Nov-10 22:09:31

I don't think I've seen a thread about this.

"Dame Patricia Hodgson, ­principal of all-girls Newnham College, told a conference that girls believe that they are less intelligent than boys and thinks that women are now less confident and less capable of seizing equal opportunities than they were 40 years ago."

Link to Women's Views on the News article on this.

Also telegraph article from today.

V. weak telegraph article but what caught my eye was one of the comments from a current cambridge student:

"I am a female student in my third year at Cambridge and have become increasingly upset by how women are treated at this university and the way in which they are expected, and often do, behave. It?s interesting that you say it was different when you were an undergraduate because I think perhaps that the problem of the belittling sexualisation of women at Cambridge has worsened even in the short time that I?ve been here. In the two and a bit years since I came up I?ve seen the founding of the online Cambridge tabloid, The Tab, with its pornographic ?Tab Totty? photo shoots and witnessed the student union?s decision to host weekly pole dancing classes for women. And this is worth getting angry about because there is no doubt that the introduction of this pornographic view of women into the ivory towers of Cambridge has a knock on effect on the way women are perceived at this university, the way they are treated, the way they behave and the way they feel about themselves which in turn has consequences for female students? academic potential. To those who haven?t seen these ?fashion? images, the nudity displayed was more than what is shown by page three girls and the photographs were of little artistic merit, and the relation to this winter?s fashion was obscure and the few clothes worn seemed incidental."

Are there any feminist groups/voices etc at universities?

Very sad to hear an experienced educationalist say that we are going backwards (although not that surprising) based on what I see myself.

What can be done to give young women more confidence?

I'm still wondering whether the current government will be responding to the review into the sexualisation of young people report.

The recommendations in there would be a good start.

Sakura Mon 29-Nov-10 07:35:16

It's an easy way to knock women's confidence- keep them focused on their looks and weight and convince them that anything else is secondary.
Males play dirty don'T they.

TryLikingClarity Mon 29-Nov-10 08:19:53

It's an interesting argument.

I work with a church youth group for teens aged 12+.

Many of them believe all sorts of old wives tales and urban myths about health. Also, many couldn't tell you the name of the current PM or anything to do with politics or geography. Yet, ask them to tell you about beauty, Katie Price's new husband or soap gossip and they are A+ students.

I can't even remember what I was like at that age, but sometimes I just want to sit down with these girls and correct the information they've been given and get them interested in the world around them.

I agree with what Sakura said. As long as they think looking pretty is paramount then that is what they will devote themselves to. And because the goalposts for looks keep changing it means they will never be satisfied.

ISNT Mon 29-Nov-10 14:45:43

All pretty depressing stuff.

When I was at uni it was fine to be a right skank TBH, even the ones who took pride in their appearance didn't spend much time on grooming.

Not saying that students have to be grimy grin but seriously, a tabloid produced by cambridge with porny women in it, and pole dancing lessons? Utterly depressing. If even our supposed brightest and best go in for objectification (and buying into it on the part of the women) then what can we do? Where are the protests, the female students banding together and going bananas? <sigh>

Eleison Mon 29-Nov-10 14:48:41

Very shocked and depressed to hear about that Cambridge magazine. That would never have happened, I think, when I was at unuversity 25-or-so years ago. We are speeding backwards.

ISNT Mon 29-Nov-10 15:02:35

tab totty


LeninGrad Mon 29-Nov-10 15:52:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Tortington Mon 29-Nov-10 15:58:47

i think a lot of this has to do with parenting at a personal level, to help your child understand that they are capable and intelligent. however when they get to a university and things such as this permeate the culture, it is a disgrace.

you can only do so much as a parent.

smallwhitecat Mon 29-Nov-10 16:05:51

Message withdrawn

ISNT Mon 29-Nov-10 16:27:03

I imagine that some (many?) men at cambridge still feel that women are at cambridge as a) a huge privilege (rather than a right IYSWIM like the men) and b) as a bit of welcome eye candy. Rather than because women might be clever and want to learn something etc.

Quite a few of my family members went to cambridge I'll have to ask them about their experiences.

smallwhitecat Mon 29-Nov-10 17:00:26

Message withdrawn

HerBeatitude Mon 29-Nov-10 19:36:18

SWC, they are the ones who rule the world and that's why the world's so bad.

snugglepops Mon 29-Nov-10 21:47:46

I am thinking about writing to the advertisers - I mean why is BT advertising with such a sexist horrid paper.

snugglepops Mon 29-Nov-10 21:47:57

I meant BP!

dittany Mon 29-Nov-10 23:59:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

smallwhitecat Tue 30-Nov-10 13:46:11

Message withdrawn

HerBeatitude Tue 30-Nov-10 14:25:39

oh I mean running the world in terms of running depts in companies (where they're in charge of flexi-time etc.), as opposed to running ministerial depts SWC! grin

Yes I can imagine how mediocre they are.

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