Sexual Objectification of Women
I have never been able to understand this. It seems to me woman are naturally sexual objects because men really like sex, and for men attraction to a woman is sexual attraction. Sure, men value things like maternal capability and intelligence, but sex is at the top of the list. There is no big deal there – it is just the way men and women are wired. I would think that my wife/girlfriend would aspire to be my sex object – I certainly want to be theirs! (Unfortunately, women view sex differently than men, so I am not sure if men can really be a sex object for women in the same way that woman are for men.)
Women objectifying themselves as sex objects are how women attract men. That is what rouge, eye shadow and foundation is all about – mimicking female sexual response in order to become sexually appealing. The whole idea of attractiveness is about displays of sexual availability – women demonstrating to high status men that they are sexually available, because that is what attracts high status men. Every woman would like high status men to be attracted to them in the same way that every man would like beautiful women attracted to them.
I think what women find disturbing is to be viewed as a one-dimensional sex object. That is, as if their only purpose is for the sexual gratification of men. Although we might want our partner to view us as a sex object, we do not want that role to define our entire being or relationship. We also want to be thought of as a good housemate, financial planning partner, and so on.
Some women are sex objects, however. Big time sex symbols like Pamela Anderson, (or whoever is hot now), and women working in the sex industry come to mind. However, these women play a vital social role. They are the objects to which low status men – the ones who women are not attracted to -- focus upon as fantasy sex partners. Human history has recorded women working in the sex business ever since people have been writing about history, so it probably has functional value from a societal perspective.
What about men and women who carry on exclusively sexual relationships? Most men like sex, and some women do as well. These people sometimes find each other and carry on strictly sexual affairs, meeting occasionally for no strings sex. What about them? Are these people simply one-dimensional sex objects to one another? If so, what is wrong with that?