Women are often objectified in today’s society and it has been an ongoing issue throughout modern society, to objectify means to “degrade to the status of a mere object”. woman is often treated in such a way and are often insulted for any strength and/or status that they have. This mindset is due to old beliefs where women was seen as nothing more than housewives and sexual objects, which as a result influenced rape culture. The advancements of technology, social media and advertising had significantly increased the sexual objectification of woman. Digital images particularly have the most influence and are posted on social media, get put on television and are used as advertising material. These influences can be implanted into the minds of young woman and can lead to self-objectification of oneself from a young age. Despite this many women are also empowered by social media and music through their body by sending out a message that breaks the traditional standard of beauty.
It is common for women to be used as sex symbols in music videos, especially in rap and hip hop music videos where women are half naked. They display sexualized body parts such as the buttocks, the legs and the breasts. While all of this is done, we rarely get a glimpse of the women’s’ face which implies that she has no personality beyond her body. Jason Derulo is an American singer who in 2014 released a song called “Wiggle” featuring rapper Snoop Dogg. The song’s lyrics is about man who likes looking at women’s buttocks jiggle. “Hot damn it (woo), your booty like two planets (woo) Go ahead and go ham sandwich (woo).” (Genius, 2019). Often we find that this is the preference of stereotypical man for a woman to have a big bum. The music video shows woman in booty shorts twerking for more than half of the video. In the beginning, we see Jason in bed with multiple girls who are half naked. This could be an indication that he had intercourse with these woman at the same time and could imply that woman have no worth. Overall this whole scenario sums up his sexual intentions with this girl that he met at a club. This shows that women are seen as objects that they are there to satisfy a men’s sexual and lustful needs and shows that these artists do not take into consideration how they objectifying women’s bodies.
Toxic masculinity forms a big part of the objectification of women and doesn’t necessarily relate to masculinity in general. Toxic masculinity is behaviours associated with masculinity that will have toxic affects on the average developing man. These behaviours often include aggressiveness, violence, emotional detachment, hyper competitiveness and more that have a negative impact on a man’s mentality (Mamba Online, 2019) Society has created this idea of what being a man is and the conditioning of the ideal man by society and eventually leads to them harming people they interact with especially woman. Often it’s common to find that with toxic masculinity we find the hyper-sexualisation of woman. Men are expected to follow the old-fashioned mentality where they are dominant over the woman. This is due to the pressure of societal complexities on men that engraves the idea that woman is there for sexual pleasure and for domestic duties. The media has depicted images of a ‘real man’ and maintain the image of the ideal man who possesses no feelings, has immense strength and finds dominance over woman. Young men and boys explore different forms of media in which they find men who have a specific form, which engraves an idea into a young man’s mind that they have an appearance to uphold and refrain themselves from any emotions except for anger. This type of anger allows for aggressive culture that promotes gender-based violence against woman. The majority of men will put their anger on woman through domestic violence or sexual abuse, which ultimately promotes rape culture. Sexual offences including rape have risen 4.6% this year. Sexual assaults increased by 9.6% and rape by 3.9%. () Many communities have strong beliefs in male superiority and entitlement to sexual intercourse that’ll of course affect the chances of sexual violence taking place in that specific community therefore proving the extent to which toxic masculinity contributes to the objectification of woman.
Woman self-sexualize themselves on social media accounts that influence young ladies and girls to follow the same path. These influencers have millions of followers who express their admiration for social media celebrities’ confidence in being able to show their bodies. One social impact that could be linked to self-objectification is increasing amount of social media users. The number of Internet users worldwide in 2019 is 4.388 billion users, which is up to 9.1% year-on-year (Smart Insights, 2019). The distribution of Instagram users by gender is 52% female users and 48% are male (Statista, 2019). Seeing that females are currently the most active users it can be said that they are more engaged. Considering that with Generation Z is a generation that are born into technology, it’s found that many children spend most their time in front of a screen. Children as young as 6 years old are likely to come across a variety of social networking sites such as Youtube and social media sites such as Instagram and Facebook. Many influencers are discovered through social media. Children are easily influenced by them because children tend to imitate what they hear or see and will get encouraged to follow the lifestyle of any influencer whether it is positive or negative. The Clermon Twins are an example of woman who hyper-sexualise their bodies on social media mainly on their Instagram channel where they currently have 1,5 million followers. They have a post, which depicts the both walking in a parking lot naked wearing heels to promote Kanye’s Yeezy Season 6 line. This image is inappropriate for young audiences as it conveys and promotes explicit content that isn’t safe for children’s viewing considering that it’s not a private account.
Although there are many cases in which women are objectified; there are social media accounts that empower woman to embrace their natural form. In today’s society we find that a woman’s beauty in line with the old- fashioned Westernized standard of beauty which is straight hair and a tall, slim body. Today woman of all shapes and sizes express their bodies in any form they wish to and embrace it as a part of them. Gurls Talk is an instagram account founded by famous model, Adwoa Aboah, who created the account as a safe social media space for people to talk and listen without any judgement or stigma (E News, 2019). She has broken barriers in the fashion industry and wanted other woman, especially those in the minority to have their voices heard (E News, 2019). This account is a great platform in which women are empowered physically and mentally.