Being Female: The Continuum of Sexualization by Jennifer K. Wesely

By Jennifer K. Wesely

It's always stated that intercourse sells, yet who will pay the associated fee? Jennifer Wesely probes the assets and effects of sexualization in women and girls s lives. providing new insights into a permanent challenge, she records the more and more pervasive and strong nature of raunch tradition and demonstrates how ladies are being sexualized in ways in which are extra severe and harmful than ever ahead of.

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Extra resources for Being Female: The Continuum of Sexualization

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Sheila also remembers her father’s cold treatment of her and her interpretation that love and affection were only acquired via sex. She describes, All through my life before this, I would just have sex so I could get affection. And it was never really like, it was never good for me. I want attention, I want “acceptable,” so that’s what I did. qxd:Brasfield 11/4/11 2:39 PM Page 43 The Processes of Sexualization 43 went to college, it was always clear to me that men just want sex. That’s why they like you.

I don’t think men have that problem. If I wasn’t a woman. You see a good-looking guy in the store, and you’re not going to walk up to him and say, nice tomatoes you’re picking out there! I feel like I can’t go anywhere. I would definitely say society sets it up that way. You don’t see a lot of men all over magazine covers. You see women all over. And billboards, what have you. It’s almost like it gives men permission to treat women like [objects] . . if you see any kind of woman walking down the street, it’s like it gives them permission just because she’s a woman.

This pornified expectation becomes part of a young girl’s identity and self-worth along with the social construction of her as a female. Levy (2005) calls this “raunch” culture and defines it as “a tawdry, tarty, cartoonlike version of female sexuality” (p. 5), a “porny” image of girls that is relentlessly marketed through the fashion industry. A term has been applied to the youngest girls being targeted by marketing and then buying (into) this image: prosti-tots (Hinshaw 2009, p. 110). In her book Pornland: How Porn Has Hijacked Our Sexuality, Dines (2010) acknowledges that although the fashion industry has always sexualized girls, the difference now is the way that this “look” is inspired by the sex industry: The low-slung jeans, the short skirt that rides up our legs as we sit down, the thong, the tattoo on the lower back, the pierced belly button, the low-cut top that shows cleavage, the high heels that contort our calves, and the pouting glossed lips all conspire to make us look like a bargain-basement version of the real thing.

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