Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sexual Objectification of Women

Did you know that when focusing your eyes upon an object, the brain either perceives it in its entirety or as a collection of its parts? A new study suggests that these two distinct cognitive processes also are involved with one’s basic physical perceptions of men and women. The research, published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, found that the brain tends to see men as people and women as body parts. When viewing images of men, perceivers tended to rely more on "global" cognitive processing; images of women were more often the subject of "local" cognitive processing. According to lead author Sarah Gervais, U of Nebrasks-Lincoln, this is the first study to link cognitive processes to objectification theory. The perceiver pool was evenly divided between men and women. The gender of participants doing the observing had no effect on the outcome. Regardless of their gender, perceivers saw men more "globally" and women more "locally."

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