Mail’s mixed messages on sexualisation
Posted on June 6, 2010
I was curious to see what, if anything, the nation’s self-appointed moral arbiters have had to say on the subject of the sexualisation of girls and young women over the years, so I did a little experiment earlier and typed the word “sexualisation” into the Mail Online’s search engine.
I wasn’t disappointed: the search turned up 7 pages worth of Mail articles. Here’s a selection of some titles and their summaries:
Archbishop Damns Disney (23/07/2002)
The Archbishop of Wales Dr Rowan Williams was today confirmed as the new head of the Church of England, and sparked controversy with an attack on commercial exploitation of children
Forget “outercourse.” Let’s teach teenagers some self-respect (24/02/2003) By MELANIE PHILLIPS
MANY PARENTS will have been astounded to read that a Government funded sex education programme is training teachers to tell 15-year-old children about anal and oral sex.
Scantily-clad vampires and a pass at Doctor Who…the BBC’s idea of family viewing (05/05/2010) By PAUL REVOIR
Doctor Who fans have accused the corporation of cynically trying to ‘sex up’ the programme to attract more adult viewers.
Sex, swearing and who’s really to blame for our children’s lost innocence (21/08/2008) By LUCY HUNTER
A recent survey found that 91 per cent of us blamed society for over-sexualising children but where does society end and personal responsibility begin?
“Sexy schoolgirls” are poisoning our culture (09/02/2007) By BEL MOONEY
Object to sexualised images such as the photos of Girls Aloud posing as ‘sexy schoolgirls’ and you’ll be derided as a prude. But the truth is they’re poisoning our culture… and turning every child into a potential sexual target
Erotic girl group steals innocence of childhood (03/02/2007) By BEL MOONEY
‘Why do you like the Pussycat Dolls?’ I asked a nine-year-old girl in pink rabbit ears as the group perform a concert at Wembley area. ‘Cos they’re thexy’ she lisped. And another piece of childhood died
Boycott call on clothes that ‘sexualise’ children (22/09/2005)
A boycott of stores selling lacy lingerie, mini-skirts and ‘boob tubes’ aimed at children as young as six has been demanded by one of Britain’s top nurses. Retailers are accused of sexualising young girls – and contributing to the rising epidemic of teenage pregnancies. Click here to tell us of examples you have seen
How pop became porn (01/03/2010) By LIZ JONES
A Home Office report calls for a ban on sexually explicit music videos before 9pm. An increasingly furious LIZ JONES spent a day watching every teenager’s favourite pop channel.
Make-up and high heels at seven? It’s time we mothers stopped our girls becoming sex objects (08/01/2009) By LIZ FRASER
Parenting expert Liz Fraser tells how a whole generation of little girls have had their innocence taken away from them.
How raunchy Lady Gaga and co make girls grow up too soon (26/04/2010) By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
Psychologists said youngsters’ inhibitions were being lowered because they are exposed to increasingly explicit lyrics which promote having sex as the ‘norm’.
How can I protect my daughter in a society that sexualises children, asks Ulrika Jonsson (06/11/2008) By ULRIKA JONSSON
A few days ago, my eight-year-old daughter Bo came home from school with a bemused expression on her face. One of her friends was hosting a makeover party.
We don’t want to grow up so fast, say ‘stressed’ girls (14/07/2008) By LAURA CLARK
Girls are being psychologically damaged by the pressure to grow up too quickly, researchers say. Sexual images in adverts and teenage magazines are contributing to mental health problems.
Music, videos and clothing are sexualising our children, warns rape centre boss (12/08/2009) By JAMES TOZER
Suggestive clothing and explicit music videos are eroding society’s values, said Dr Catherine White, a clinical director of a sexual assault referral centre in Manchester.
Why do Rihanna’s pop songs have to tell girls they’re ‘sluts’? (20/05/2010) By DR LINDA PAPADOPOULOS
Our children are surrounded by messages and images that aren’t intended for them. But these messages are so prevalent they can’t avoid them.
Teen beauty contest that lists vital statistics branded ‘a shop window for sex offenders’ (26/05/2009) By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
Online contest Miss Teen Queen UK was blasted after it featured a string of girls under the age of 16 with details of their cup measurements as well as hip and waist sizes.
What a sick world when women yearn to look like girls…and little girls are dressed to look like women (19/04/2010) By OLIVIA LICHTENSTEIN
As Primark axes a padded bikini for seven-year-olds, one mother asks how parents can fail to realise the consequences of dressing their daughters in clothes that add fuel to the sick desires of paedophiles?
Teenage boys watching hours of pornography are treating their girlfriends like sex objects (08/03/2010) By PENNY MARSHALL
We’re in a world where there are few, if any, boundaries in place to ‘protect’ a woman’s honour. Women are free to behave as they wish and the vast amounts of sexual content on TV and in films attests to that.
What are their mothers thinking? Girls as young as 13 parade themselves for a disturbing new beauty contest (02/06/2009) By NATASHA COURTENAY-SMITH
In provocative poses, middle-class girls parade themselves (and their vital statistics) for the Miss Teen UK competition. They may not know better but their mothers certainly should.
‘Sex kitten toys are robbing children of their innocence,’ says watchdog (10/02/2009) By SEAN POULTER
The chief consumer watchdog has condemned the sexualisation of young girls, warning it triggers ’emotional distress, anxiety, low self-esteem and eating disorders’.
Too much too young (19/02/2010) By DAVID CAMERON
Premature sexualisation is like pollution. It’s in the air that our children breathe. All the time.
The little girls ‘sexualised’ at age of five (20/02/2007)
A generation of girls is being psychologically damaged by the sexualisation of toys, clothes and cartoons, having a devastating impact on mental and physical health, experts have warned.
The message here is clear: the Mail firmly believes that sexualising girls and young women is wrong. They think it’s a bad thing. In fact as far as the Mail is concerned, the sexualisation of girls and young women is all but responsible for the downfall of society itself.
Imagine my confusion then when I turned to today’s Mail and found this piece of wank-maggery:
Miley Cyrus ends her London visit with a bang: singer gives the crowd at G-A-Y her raunchiest performance yet
“Miley Cyrus has gone to great lengths to shed her ‘good girl’ image and it won’t be long before we’ve forgotten about the wholesome teen who played Hannah Montana.
The singer has been in London promoting her forthcoming album Can’t Be Tamed and she made sure that she lived up to the title of the new LP with an outrageous performance at G-A-Y this weekend.
Miley, 17, would have been made aware that performers at the club often put on their most raunchy routines at the infamous club which no doubt gave her the impetous to go that little bit further for the largely homosexual crowd at the venue.
SCROLL DOWN TO SEE FOOTAGE FROM THE PERFORMANCE…“
“Starting out in a Union Jack top, Miley soon found herself stripping down to her black dress, which had sections cut out both on the torso and at the top of her thighs.” Pants the Mail Online reporter, “In fact witnesses at the club said her underwear was clearly visible during much of the energetic performance.”
“This is just terrible!” he goes on to say: “What on earth was her mother thinking?”
Except, erm, no, sorry, no he doesn’t. I made that last bit up.
No, you might expect the Mail Online reporter to say something like that, especially given the Mail’s previously published pieces which I’ve outlined above. But he doesn’t say it; not this time.
This time we’re treated instead to a piccie of 17 year old Miley Cyrus, where her underwear is clearly visible, captioned with:
“Extra hot: The 17-year-old singer kicked off her act wearing a Union Jack top, but soon removed it to reveal a barely-there black dress”
And here are some of the Google Ads that accompany the piece:
The sexualisation of girls and young women is a bad bad thing according to the Daily Mail. Unless of course it’s the sexualisation of a young hot 17 year old like Miley Cyrus.
Then it’s a thigh-rubbingly, tongue-hanging-outedly, darned good thing.
Great collection of headlines and articles. Good idea to search the topic!
I am not surprised the Mail is contradictory; I think most mainstream media contradicts itself all the time on issues of sex and gender.
Thing is, I think if we did a similar search of feminist literature we might also find some contradictions in relation to views on sex, sexuality and ‘sexualisation’- a word I really don’t like to use myself.
Are we as feminists against ‘sexualisation’? I think this is a question worth asking. I am not sure how I’d answer it.
“turning every child into a potential sexual target” – illustrates the classic, crucial blindspot of nearly every non-feminist why-oh-why piece on sexualisation – let me fix that, not “every child”, “every girl“. Plus, Girls Aloud, or whoever, didn’t create the “sexy schoolgirls” trope. If they’re being styled that way, then that’s simply a sign of the extent of uncritical normalisation of porn-makers’ & porn-users’ obsession with the predatory gaze, the whole “schoolgirl” and “barely legal” thing.
It’s not young women, or mothers, or popstars, or “society” that’s doing the sexualising, it’s straight men looking at girls and young women’s bodies and deciding that they are available to them, whether that entitlement remains fantasy or is acted out.
What is also frustrating is the way that all those articles present the issue of sexualisation as being a problem of girls learning about sex or dealing with sexuality – sexualisation is problematised as girls’ inappropriate sexual expression. In so far as clothing/makeup/presentation can be said to be sexual – it’s not, it just conveys standard hetero-patriarchal messages about women’s role as sex objects.
“the largely homosexual crowd at the venue.” – once again the Mail reliably delivers genteelly poisonous shit.
I recently wrote a post on this exact same subject: http://singleparenthoodbygappy.blogspot.com/2010/05/pornification.html
The sexualisation of women and girls, and the increasing pornification of our culture that the Daily Mail pretends to be opposed to whilst openly salivating over a 17 year old Miley Cyrus, is distorting everyones sexuality and damaging the self-esteem of women and girls everywhere.
Post feminist society my arse 😉
@ Quiet Riot Girl – to me the word “sexualisation” has nothing to do with women owning & expressing their own sexuality and enjoying sexual autonomy, which I think is what most feminists would like to see. “Sexualisation” implies something that is being done to someone or something, and doesn’t convey or require any kind of mutuality or consent on the part of the person being sexualised. For one person to sexualise another – to think of using them sexually, to presume to see some sign of sexual availability – tells us nothing about the feelings or wishes of the sexualised person. To me sexualisation is another term for sexual objectification – and neither of those terms are the same as simple sexual knowledge or sexual attraction.
Great piece Gappy. And sorry for the delay in your comment getting through – for some reason it got logged as spam by WordPress 😦
In fact the Daily Male is not contradictory because it endlessly focuses on blaming women and girls. Not once does the Daily Male even mention the issue of male accountability, meaning it is not ‘society per se’ neither is it women and girls driving popular culture’s obsession with portraying women and girls as men’s sexualised disposable commodities.
It is our male supremacist/patriarchal society which is the driving force of portraying women and girls as dehumanised sexualised commodities. Is any criticism ever levied at the male-dominant sex industry/the male -dominant multi-national business corporations who are making huge profits by deliberately mis-representing women and girls as sexualised commodities? No of course not because if the Daily Male were to do so this would mean a 365 degree change and given the Daily Male is male supremacist this will never happen.
Focusing on blaming women and girls as well as using gender neutral language such as ‘children’ ensures the group which maintains its power and control over women’s and girls’ lives and their sexualities is never, ever questioned or subjected to analysis.
Of course feminist works on gender, race and sex is contradictory because feminism too is now subject to the neo-liberal/neo-libertarian/individualistic politics wherein we are all supposedly equal and every is able to ‘pick and choose’ because women are all now individuals.
Patriarchy does not exist neither does male supremacy and yet, yet, we have the Daily Male proclaiming itself to be the ‘moral voice of reason’ whilst simultaneously promoting pornified images of yet another young woman who happens to be a ‘celebrity.’ So who benefits? Why men of course, because masculinity must never be questioned or critiqued, male sexuality is a given and also must never be critiqued.
Nor must we question why the eroticisation of (male) sexual domination and (female) sexual submission is being promoted as ‘common sense’ because power supposedly does not exist, given everyone is able to ‘choose’ their lifestyle or sexuality.
The personal is political no longer applies apparently and yes sexualisation does mean reducing a human being to a sexualised commodity and guess which group have been reduced to disposable dehumanised sexualised commodities? Certainly not men and this applies irrespective of whether they are heterosexual or homosexual because the notion that sexual dominance and sexual control over another feminised human being is ‘erotic, transgressive and even radical’ is as old as the hills. Patriarchy has always promoted the binary notion that human beings are either masculine or feminine and guess which group is the dominant one? Why men of course.
Daily Male doesn’t fool me because they have one aim only and that is the continuance of a white male supremacist society.
Thanks Maria S.
I don’t think ‘sexualisation’ or ‘objectification’ are bad per se.
I think in our society, women and girls are objectified much more than men and boys. This gender imbalance is one issue.
I am interested in ‘commodification’ as a term as I think it contains in it the relationship between capitalism/consumerism and objectification of bodies.
As a feminist who writes kink erotica I play around with ‘objectification’ of women a lot, as a fantasy. I do not want to make out that men are wrong to have fantasies involving objectification of women. It is the commercial and social context in which those fantasies are encouraged/sold to men, that is problematic for me.
I don’t think ‘sexualisation’ or ‘objectification’ are bad per se.
Being reduced to a function like a ladder or a toaster isn’t bad per se?
Quiet Riot Girl: “I don’t think ‘sexualisation’ or ‘objectification’ are bad per se. “
I do. The distinction about these being things that are done to another person, versus positive, respectful, consensual ways of being sexually interested in/attracted to someone, and in expressing that interest, is a very important one, because often people will misunderstand and blur meanings and say something like “but I like being objectified”, when they mean they like being found attractive, and like wanted attention from other people, perhaps also like being looked at generally. This is not the same as being regarded as an object, a thing, not human.
I understand however that, quite possibly, in a kink context you may straightforwardly be referring to objectification and dehumanisation exactly as I mean it, but as something that people
actively want to be subjected to. I also understand/hope that this would done with great care taken over consent. However the possibility that some people actively desire to be literally objectified, does not actually undermine feminists’ challenging the huge problem of the everyday, unwanted, objectification and sexualisation of women that is virtually the norm in wider society.
“I do not want to make out that men are wrong to have fantasies involving objectification of women. It is the commercial and social context in which those fantasies are encouraged/sold to men, that is problematic for me.”
Men don’t just have fantasies – in many very real ways they act on those fantasies, on the idea that women exist to be sexually available to them or to otherwise be of service to them. That might involve paying to sexually use someone else’s body or for a representation of someone else’s sexualised performance – or it might involve choosing to sexually use the other person against their will. (Objectification and commodification are similar yes, and the commercialisation of sexuality is dehumanising. But it’s not the buying & selling in itself that is the problem, it’s the treating of people as commodities/things to be used – after all, objects can be bought and sold, they can also be used, exchanged, disposed of, stolen, given away.)
I don’t object to people paying for sex or watching sexualised displays. I object to the gendered and economic exploitation that tends to surround those activities in our current society.
If we don’t accept that objectification is a key aspect of sexuality (Freud,anyone?) we won’t be able to tackle and challenge the way that objectification becomes dehumanising and exploitative in our society.
I don’t know why, but the phrase “the largely homosexual crowd” is just so quintessentially Mailoid, it makes me smile.
argh it’s so frustrating!
melanie phillips saying ‘teach young girls self respect’ – yes, lets teach young girls self respect! but lets not repress their natural sexuality, which is what she is actually promoting.
it really irritates me how the Dm et al have kind of cornered the debate on sexualisation when actually what they want and suggest is just as damaging – i.e. seeing sex as BAD and sex education as BAD and open conversation about sex as BAD.
and yeh, their whole obsession with young girls is very creepy. tabloid watch does some great work on their endless cooing over suri cruise.
anyway – i agree with MariaS. i don’t think sexualisation and objectification is a good thing. because, in my opinion, it isn’t often coming from a female-centric place. we live in a society which is saturated with male defined images of female sexuality that gives a one dimensional and very narrow view of women’s bodies and sexualities. the highly commodified, one size fits all version of sexuality that we are sold through this imagery seems to stifle any expression of women’s sexuality that doesn’t fit in. so, while there are some women who do feel sexy and liberated and beautiful when they fit into this mould (and that is fine btw – i’m not here to judge what people find sexually fulfilling!) other women don’t and their sexualities are ignored and seen as wrong or different. so we end up in this weird world where human sexuality is replaced by a commercial, commodified, manmade picture of ‘correct’ desire.
So – when i think about the sexualisation of young girls it seems to me that young women are growing up with a very fixed portrayal of how they should behave and look to be sexually attractive, which completely ignores and disregards their own feelings and desires. this leads to the research ariel levy cites of ‘silent bodies’ that don’t know how to express their personal, sexual feelings.
so, whilst the DM says that sexualisation of culture and girls isn’t great, i don’t agree with them that the answer is to hide young people away and repress their very real feelings and emotions. instead, we should be educating young women and men about mutuality and respect, pleasure and desire so that when/if they choose to start sexual relationships, they are not coerced or pressured into doing so, and they are confident and happy with the way they want to express their sexuality.
human sexuality is so rich, so exciting! it pisses me off that it’s been reduced to objectification and lad’s mags.
hope that isn’t too convoluted or confused response!
‘Largely Homosexual crowd’ suggests a bunch of very well-endowed metrosexuals, retaining just a little soupcon of hetero identity amidst their largely homosexual personas.
Quiet Riot Girl – how would you define objectification and could you explain further why you regard it as a “key aspect of sexuality”?
Not being arsey, just interested – I suspect that we’re regarding objectification in different ways.
I don’t know enough about Freud’s theories regarding objectification, only a layperson’s superficial knowledge of Freud. I’d be rather loathe to take his work around sexuality as definitive , from a feminist perspective.
I did a very brief bit of googling, and while I didn’t find anything sufficiently Freud & sex 101 in that time, I did come across this interesting article
Objectification Theory: Towards Understanding Women’s Lived Experiences & Mental Health Risks – Barbara L. Fredrickson & Tomi-Ann Roberts, Psychology of Women Quarterly #21, 1997
Click to access FredricksonRoberts.pdf
Anyone who includes links to academic articles in internet blog comments is fine by me!
I will read that and also I found this on the concept of ‘fetish’ which is one way of looking at ‘objectification’.
Objectification is a word that means something. It’s not just virtual ink on the virtual page. When men objectify girls and women, it means that they want to literally use the girls and women, as a mastubatory device. When they say “hey nice tits” or nice ass, it means that they want to stick their dicks into those tits or that ass, ejaculate, clean themselves off, and leave.
This has nothing whatsoever to do with sexuality. And certainly not with female pleasure. It’s the very narrative of misogyny. It’s the narrative of rape, is what it is.
Whenever I talk about this issue with other feminists I always end up getting accused of not taking rape seriously. I am a bit sick of this accusation.
This is an internet discussion. I like to have informed discussions online and off, so I often read around topics and share info with others who do the same.
I am sure that everyone who comments on Cath’s Blog also is active in feminism in the real world. If not, I doubt we’d be here. I don’t want to hog the debate here but if anyone wants to chat about this further or share more reading my email is email@example.com
Quiet Riot Girl
Oh one last thing: this paper on sexualisation/pornification was recommended by Dr Petra Boynton – @DrPetra on twitter who is an academic and sex educator. Hope it is useful: http://bit.ly/doAVUg
It makes me giggle as well Tim. Well the word *homosexual* does basically, it is frequently used ironically in my neck of the woods. It’s the archaic Bufton-Tufton formality of it I think. In the midst of a piece about Miley Cyrus performing or not performing some faux lesbian act depending on who you believe. But I still also hold to my belief that the Male is a complicated work of satire, and when this is finally revealed those of us in the know will say ‘told you so’.
Anyways, the whole ‘sexualisation’ thing gets right on my beeswax. It is missing the point by several miles. Whether young girls are ‘sexualised’ or not it doesn’t make them any more vulnerable to abuse by paedophiles as is constantly claimed. Because paedophiles like children. Doh!
It is obviously undesirable for young children/teenagers to feel compelled to be ‘sexy’ and have to prance round in heels and makeup to feel that they have value. But the same is true of adult women. A fact the satirists at the Male have missed.
Quiet Riot Girl, thanks for the link explaining fetishisation. Seems to me there that Marx’s concept of social/economic fetishisation is a whole lot more useful than Freud’s concept of fetishisation as a convoluted and improbable explanation of sexual preferences and behaviour! Using Freud to explain sexuality seems like a dead-end to me; because his theories are male-centred from the off, plus they simply don’t seem adequate or useful in explaining sexuality as I think of and experience it. (And I want very much want to read this).
I don’t think that factcheckme’s comment amounts to any kind of accusation. Her point is valid: to her, and to me too, objectification is an inherently negative, unreclaimable thing, an enabling part of rape culture, whereas you seem to regard it as something that is, or can be, positive or neutral in its own right. Objectification to me means dehumanising someone – to regard them as a thing for use. To objectify someone seems to me to be something that directly would make it easier to use/abuse them.
Which is why I’m trying to understand how you are defining sexual objectification and in what way you see it as neutral/positive/reclaimable. I think I would then want to argue for finding alternative words and ways of talking about whatever element or process or practice of sexuality that you currently mean by objectification.
The crux of this clash of meanings is, I think, that objectification is a word/idea key to explaining what is wrong with how misogynist men regard & represent women – it is so useful because it is a very clear & self-explanatory word: to treat someone as a thing, not a person.
Anyway, I will come back to this here, that is if Cath doesn’t mind! (I will try not to be too long winded. ) Am revising & mentally digesting all sorts of things about the gaze, and what it means to look & be looked at, fuzzy thoughts about power & gender that need to brew a while. (But if you really would prefer to continue talking by email QRG, I can do that too)
Have started reading that report on “sexualised goods aimed at children” but it is quite long. Lots to digest – looks like a really useful research & consideration of all this stuff that the media likes to get up in arms about.
Anyone who’s even been raped/sexually assaulted will tell you what objectification means. It means feeling as if you’re not actually there. You are not a person, just a thing. An object to be used.
The confusion arises when folks can’t tell the difference between objectification and sexual attraction. Clue: if you’re sexually attracted to someone, it doesn’t stop you treating them as a human being and respecting their autonomy.
Thanks for all your comments. I think the misunderstandings/differences of opinions show that this word objectification is not entirely clear: we do have different understandings of it and do attach different meanings/values to it.
I am trying to point out that we all do objectify people within sexuality. I Look at pictures of naked men for my own gratification. I don’t know them or care about them at the time. I sometimes see a bloke in the street and say to my friend ‘I so would’ or ‘nice arse’. I sometimes say that to a man’s face if I am really drunk, I mean confident. I like pornography. I like bits of bodies like torsos and cocks. I have had sex with a man and not cared about him. I certainly didn’t phone to check he got home ok.
I don’t know if sexual assault and violence against women is all about objectification. Remember it has been going on a lot longer than the media obsession with women’s bodies and the saturation of our culture with imagery. I think it is a part of it, but we put too much emphasis on that one aspect. When I was being assaulted by my ex, I think he did know who I was and did see me as a ‘person’. He had no interest in my body. He wanted to hurt ME specifically. This is to do with something other than objectification in my view.
I think objectification as people here have described it does exist and does contribute to the misogyny of our culture but it is by no means the whole story.
Also organisations such as ‘OBJECT have campaigned for legislation limiting the sex industry eg lapdancing clubs and criminalising clients of sex workers. I do not think this helps the women who work in the sex industry. Objectification is part of their job. They do not want to be treated like criminals or people on the ‘edge’ of society. I think the concept of objectification as used by some feminists actually serves to de-humanise sex workers. They are people whose voices should be heard in this debate.
I think the concept of objectification as used by some feminists actually serves to de-humanise sex workers.
OMFG. pomo triple-think rears its ugly head. you know, because its *feminists* who are causing problems for sex-workers, and women in general. yes, thats it. its the feminists.
I am trying to point out that we all do objectify people within sexuality. I Look at pictures of naked men for my own gratification. I don’t know them or care about them at the time. I sometimes see a bloke in the street and say to my friend ‘I so would’ or ‘nice arse’. I sometimes say that to a man’s face if I am really drunk, I mean confident. I like pornography. I like bits of bodies like torsos and cocks. I have had sex with a man and not cared about him. I certainly didn’t phone to check he got home ok
Have you raped anyone though?
I almost invariably find factcheckme that when sex workers are murdered, the killer is a feminist. Same goes for sex workers being raped and beaten up.
(do I really have to add sarcasm?)
And looking at someone and thinking they’re sexually attractive is not the same as ‘objectifying’ them. There’s a significant power imbalance between men and women (it’s called patriarchy) which means that your actions are not equivalent to similar actions performed by a male. I very much doubt a man would feel threatened/harassed by your saying to him ‘nice arse’ in the way a woman may do. He would probably just call you a ‘slag’ or a ‘slut’ to his friends instead if he wasn’t sexually interested in you. He may well do this even if he was sexually interested in you.
There have been numerous attempts to produce equivalents of soft porn magazines like playboy with pictures of naked men for (non lesbian) women. All have failed.
I also find it interesting that you think only sex workers are able to comment on ‘objectification’. A) because you seem to think it is something that only happens to sex workers and b) because you say you have never been raped, but feel perfectly qualified to comment on rape and tell those who have been raped how they should feel.
Oh and re ‘fetishization’ can I point that originally fetishes were objects considered to have religious/spiritual/magical significance? If you hear an archaeologist refer to a fetish (at least professionally) they’re likely to be referring to something like this.
(yes they look like gold willies, but they’re actually jackal headed gods).
Marx did indeed have a theory of commodity fetishization, and the word is now most commonly in use to describe a sexual fetish. Which all goes to prove that language can be used in different ways!
Playing around with language (as George Orwell spotted) is often used to obscure what’s really going on. They call it postmodernism now though, instead of newspeak.
Thanks for the link to the golden willies polly, they are rather delightful!