Sexual Objectification Works Both Ways.

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Recently I had a (civilised) argument with someone about a certain site that in many people’s opinion sexually objectifies women (it doesn’t matter what site it is, there are tons that do it anyway). Many people tend to talk a lot about how this and that sexually objectifies women these days. I think this is wonderful as this tends to trigger interesting debates and perhaps brings the subject more into focus. However, I feel like there is a need to widen this idea as I see more and more sexual objectification of men as well. Perhaps some of you would think that’s equality finally, but I think it’s equally bad. I mean, if one gender is miserable, swimming in stereotypes, should we help fix the problem or should we all give a hand at making the other gender equally miserable too?

There are many ways to conceptualize this objectification of men, but I feel like I can only illustrate how I feel through advertising, since I have been happily studying it last semester. The course changed my view of things, which was a very naive one before, and made me realise the problem is more complex than pointing at things and saying “it’s wrong to do that”.  My post will only include some examples that I feel are worth posting, but there are many others I don’t have the courage to post online as they often include nudity or extreme content. I am not cherry-picking my examples, but be warned that it will be an image-heavy post (images that might offend some of you). Read the rest of this entry »

Explaining Art to Hares and Defending Good Literature.

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Old Woman Reading. Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn.

I don’t understand something, so it must be wrong.

It sounds funny when you read that, doesn’t it? Imagine a world where everything you don’t understand has no value and is disregarded. You can’t figure out how your computer works? Better get that pen and paper out. You don’t have the slightest idea about plumbing and running water? Better start digging that well. I could go on and on, but I think I’ve made my point. Not everything we don’t understand is bad or wrong. Being a skeptic is a healthy attitude most of the time, but we can’t blindly go around the world saying this and that is wrong just because we can’t figure it out.  The same analogy goes for taste: just because YOU think it’s bad, doesn’t mean it really is. It only means it’s not for you. Which is fine.

I could name tens or even hundreds of authors that were promised they will never get published, or artists that were told that they will never make it, all now renowned in their chosen field. In contrast, not everything you like is of real importance to the humanity (after all, ´´guilty pleasure´´ books didn’t get their nick name from nothing). Read the rest of this entry »