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Feminism: Sex & gender discussions

Is the sexualisation of women affecting girls?

19 replies

muruki · 12/01/2012 14:09

Hi all

I am a 26 year old female working on my dissertation and looking at the sexualisation of women and how it is affecting girls (ages from birth-18yrs). In my opinion sexualisation is everywhere around us in magazines, film, music videos, toys (bratz, barbie etc), cartoons and various merchandise aimed at girls. As mums (or dads) i would like your opinion on this issue which is close to my heart. i am not yet a mum but am starting to veiw the world through a parent's eyes. this is the reason why i chose this topic.

I am working on a questionairre and will provide a link for it in the next 24 hours which i would be grateful if anyone could fill out. if you need more info please feel free to contact me otherwise discuss away.

thanks

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CogitoErgoSometimes · 12/01/2012 14:48

Why only women and why only girls? There are sexual images and references prevalent across modern society, they are experienced by boys and girls alike and they involve men as well as women. How sexual imagery affects children depends on several things.... access, understanding and discussion. To a point, we can deny access by acting as censor on toys, movies, computer games, internet pages. Very small children simply don't look at a Barbie doll or a half-naked David Beckham on a cologne advert as a sexual thing - that's the reaction of a sexually aware adult. As children get older, good parents will be providing them with the skills to deal with life as it is, rather than trying to exclude them from it. That means discussing what they see & what they expereince, what it means and what they think about it, what is acceptable and unacceptable and what is appropriate behaviour to copy or reject.

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KRITIQ · 12/01/2012 16:16

I'd be happy to oblige, and there is a raft of information out there that shows the impact of sexualisation of girls and hypermasculinisation of boys on BOTH boys and girls (yes cogito) but that the greatest detrimental impact is on girls and young women, in terms of things like self-esteem, sexual health, unwanted pregnancies, mental health and well-being and risk of being in abusive and controlling relationships.

Fire away!

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SardineQueen · 12/01/2012 16:27

Interesting topic and I would be happy to fill in your questionnaire Smile

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muruki · 14/01/2012 14:03

i am only looking at girls because it is too broad a topic, there is not a lot of written material on this issue hopefully one day i can make it a phd thesis

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muruki · 14/01/2012 14:09

hi all

thank you so much for your responses. Origionally i wanted to look sexualisation how it is affecting children as a whole but the more i delved into it and did my research i realised (a) there wasn't enough material on this subject matter (b) most of the limited material in the form of books, documentaries etc available focused on girls. (c) sexualisation affects boy and girls in different ways and the issues raised were too broad. So i narrowed it down to just girls, CogitoErgoSometimes i hear your arguement and am thinking of making this a phd thesis looking at not just girls but boys.

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AlwaysWild · 14/01/2012 15:29

Muruki, don't be put off focusing on girls. We live in a patriarchal society, which disproportionately impacts on women and girls. All the 'but it affects boys too' wah wah is a way of depoliticising and obscuring this fact. Just like racial stereotypes impact more adversely on people who aren't white and sexuality stereotypes impact more adversely on people who aren't straight. You posted on a feminist board, you don't have to justify focusing on women and girls.

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lollygag · 14/01/2012 17:42

Muruki; You are doing a dissertation on the sexualisation of women and how it is affecting girls.You say you are 26 and starting to look at the world through a parents eyes.Here' s my advice;There will be hundreds of people doing a similar dissertation,it's been De Rigueur but is about to become Passe. You will be entering a job market that will be mainly looking for engineers and scientists or people who can build things.The world has changed post credit crunch.Swap to engineering while you still can.

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messyisthenewtidy · 14/01/2012 18:02

It'll become passe when it's a thing of the past. Unfortunately not yet.

Muruki, have a look at the Object website too, they have done a fair bit of research on it and there are some good articles. I'd be happy to fill in your questionnaire - just pm it to me.

Good luck with your dissertation.

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kittensmakemesqueee · 14/01/2012 18:33

This might be on topic (might be not) but there is a petition to get breast feedin back on sesame street. They used to discuss it so children understood. They stopped doing this and now use bottles on the tv show.

Presumably because now girls are taught that their breast are sexual objects and would upset them to see it. Why can't we show little girls what their bodies are actually for and that they aren't some boy's toys. Angry

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StewieGriffinsMom · 15/01/2012 08:11

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MsAverage · 15/01/2012 11:20

Lolly, 26yo is 10 years too late do develop maths skills needed for engineering. And an "equality officer", say, in a local council is not a bad job at all. Provided the author needs a job, which may be not the case.

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MsAverage · 15/01/2012 11:31

Although, I am quite surprised with the vagueness of the dissertation topic. I thought modern gender studies have more focused topics such as "Social expectations and actual outcomes of breast augmentation in SE England: investment or expense?" and so forth. But may be I am wrong.

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lollygag · 15/01/2012 16:39

'Equality Officer'? I think that could be one job my cash strapped local authority could possibly do without.

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KRITIQ · 15/01/2012 19:55

And that would be because you think equality is not important then.

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muruki · 16/01/2012 16:04

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MitchierInge · 16/01/2012 17:09

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muruki · 16/01/2012 17:21

?

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JuliaScurr · 16/01/2012 18:33

hope it goes well muruki Smile

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JazzAnnNonMouse · 16/01/2012 18:43

Done Smile

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