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Body objectification and “Fat-talk”. Effects on emotion, motivation, and cognitive performance Ethnicity, gender, and vulnerability to self- objectification Women who objectify women: The vicious circle of objectification? Conclusions
Westernized societies sexually objectify the female body (especially during their years of reproductive potential) Women tend to be judged on the basis of how they look like; The more positive the evaluation, the more likely a woman is to be valued by others;
Other peoples evaluations can determine how girls and women are treated in day-to- day interactions, which can shape their social and economic life outcomes; Many women internalize the prevailing sociocultural attitudes (they self-objectify); Self-objectification can be triggered and enlarged by certain situations (state SO);
Trying on swimwear produced state self- objectification in women and men alike; But only for women did state self- objectification produce body shame; For men, trying on the swimsuit produced a more lighthearted self-conscious state (feeling shy and silly).
Increased body shameand anxiety Lower self-esteem Other mental health risks, such as disordered eating, sexual dysfunction and depression. Disruption of cognitive functions by reducing the mental resources.
Ha-ha! You are crazy! I also want to be beautiful..
Self-objectification - a view of oneself as an object that is valued for use by others. State self-objectification - self-objectification that is situationally prompted. “Fat talk” - a self- disparaging body talk that occurs in peer groups and appears to contain an element of social influence.
Hypothesis 1: Trait and state self-objectification will be associated with an increase in anxiety and other negative emotions. Hypothesis 2: Trait and state self-objectification will be associated with reduced intrinsic motivation, self-efficacy, and cognitive performance in several domains. Hypothesis 3: Exposure to body-disparaging “fat talk” will be associated with a greater degree of the above deficits than will exposure to more neutral “control talk.”
80 undergraduate women at Yale University Age: 17 - 21 years old. Nationality: 61% European American, 14% Asian, 10% African American, 6% Hispanic, and 9% “other.” Mean height: 64.36 in. = 163.5 cm. Mean weight: 137.19 lbs (pounds) = 62.2 kg. Body Mass Index (BMI): 23.21. 18 participants were underweight, 51 as average weight, and 11 as overweight.
Pretesting: gathering trait self-objectification scores before the test.The Self-Objectification Questionnaire shows how individuals rank the importance of five appearance-based items relative to the importance of five competence-based. Range of scores −25 to +25;Higher scores greater emphasis on appearance (Trait Self-Objectification , TSO)
participants thought it was a study of consumer behavior and emotion; they were asked to try on and evaluate a swimsuit or a sweater (the experimental manipulation); in the “dressing room,” participants overheard a peer make body-disparaging comments (fat talk condition) or disparaging comments about computers (control condition).
Division of participants Assignment of experimental conditions (swimsuit/sweater, fat talk/control talk) Instructions Confederate’s talk Fulfillment of the task
As predicted, women in swimsuits wrote significantly more “body shape and size” statements than did women in sweaters. They were significantly more likely to include “body shape and size” statements among their first three responses. ↓ Objectification leads women to define their sense of self with their bodies, and wearing a swimsuit appeared to elicit state self-objectification.
Hypothesis 1: Trait and state self-objectification will be associated with an increase in anxiety and other negative emotions.Findings: Women in swimsuits (objectified women) reported feeling more surprised, revolted, shy, self- conscious, humiliated, marginally more anxious and were less attentive than women in sweaters. ↓ Being in a swimsuit (objectified) is associated with more unpleasant emotional states than is being more fully clothed (less objectified). Hypothesis 1 was confirmed!
Hypothesis 2: Trait and state self-objectification will be associated with reduced intrinsic motivation, self- efficacy, and cognitive performance in several domains.Findings: Lower TSO was associated withhigher self-efficacy andhigher intrinsic motivation ↓ Women who generally self-objectify to a greater extent may at the same time be less likely to experience the feelings of capability and purposefulness that are characteristics of self- efficacy and intrinsic motivation. Hypothesis 2 was confirmed partially.
Hypothesis 3: Exposure to body-disparaging “fat talk” will be associated with a greater degree of the above deficits than will exposure to more neutral “control talk.”Findings: for women wearing swimsuits, hearing fat talk was associated with less negative emotion than hearing control talk. For women in sweaters, however, the opposite was true. for women high in TSO, hearing fat talk was associated with decreased motivation and performance. For women low in TSO, hearing fat talk was associated with increased motivation and performance. No other relations were revealed . ↓ Exposure to “fat-talk” itself doesn’t cause any emotional or cognitive reductions. Hypothesis 3 was not confirmed
Why did participants respond so differently to fat-talk condition?? (in interaction between fat-talk condition and emotions)
Temporary increase in self-confidence via the process of social comparison; Distraction participants’ attention away from their own exposed bodies via fat talk; Excuse to dismiss any bad feelings; (Un)conventional situation.
Length that caused exhaustion; High number of variables of interest and the relatively small sample size (N = 80); Motivation and performance-based measures were more trait than state oriented, which could explain why TSO tended to decrease a relationship with them, whereas state self-objectification did not.
The potentially dangerous impact of fattalk should not be underestimated. Itmay be particularly damaging to thosewho are exposed to eating problems..
The Swimsuit Becomes Us All: Ethnicity, Gender, and Vulnerability to Self- ObjectificationMichelle R. Hebl, Eden B. King, Jean Lin,
Overweighting remainsone of the few stigmasunaffected by trends toward“political correctness”.Overweight individualscontinue to bediscriminated againstin both professional andinterpersonal domains.The intensity of this negative stigmaseems to differ by gender and ethnicity.
Objectification theory: Because of societal norms, women can be characterized by a greater tendency to objectify themselves.
The stigma of obesity is more negative for women than for men; African American women and men do not stigmatize obese individuals to the same extent as do Caucasian people; Asian American and Hispanic women are similar to Caucasian in stigmatizing obese; African American women can still be affected by situations in which the stigmas are activated.
Fredrickson et al.’s (1998) research men showed no effect of swimsuit or sweater condition WHY?? For men, wearing swim trunks is not so very different from wearing shorts. Solution? Try on Speedos!! BTW, what are Speedos??! 8)
Individuals in the experimental (swimsuit) condition will have higher levels of state self-objectification. The experience of state self- objectification will lower self-esteem for individuals in the swimsuit relative to individuals in the sweater.
All participants will be negatively affected by a state of self-objectification regardless of gender and ethnic background. Increased state self-objectification will cause lower math scores. Heightened self-objectification will cause less food consumption.
400 undergrads from 2 southern universities; 56% women, 44%; 93 African Americans, 130 Caucasians, 88 Hispanics, and 89 Asian Americans; For extra credit or experimental credit
Demographic information (ethnicity, gender, height, and weight); Marketing questionnaire corresponded to a fragrance, a sweater or swimsuit, and chocolate; Trait Self-Objectification Questionnaire; State Self-Objectification Test; An indirect measure of body shame; State Self-Esteem Scale; Math test.
Experimental part (changing clothes) Completion of a set of questionnaires measuring trait self-objectification, body shame, and attitudes toward obesity. Math test Another set of questionnaires measuring body esteem and bogus marketing items
Changing into original clothes The third task (tasting the food) Complete a set of questionnairesmeasuring state self-esteem andbody image identification Counting the proportion ofcandy consumed(After participants left).
Trait Self-Objectification Women tended to have higher levels of trait self-objectification; Hispanics reported the highest levels of trait self- objectification and African Americans the lowest; Asian American men reported higher levels of trait self-objectification than Asian American women
Possibly a novel situation to men was introduced; Looking at math performance as a dependent variable, the participants’ ability couldn’t be controlled; Reliance on undergraduate participants!!
Men and ethnic minorities canexperience equivalent consequences as Caucasian women when subjected to a state of self- objectification
Women Who Objectify OtherWomen: The Vicious Circle of Objectification? Peter Strelan and Duane Hargreaves
Women, morethan men, express dissatisfaction with their bodies
Women who placed greaterimportance on their own weight and shape also placed greater importance on these dimensions when evaluating other women.
Women self-objectify more and are more objectified by both genders; Men would objectify women more and men less than women would; Positive correlation between women’s and men’s self-objectification and their objectification of others; Increased self-objectification among women and men is related to decreased body satisfaction
132 participants (64 women and 68 men); From 17 to 30 years; White and middle-class; 70 - undergraduate psychology students at an Australian university; 62 - friends of the students (39 undergrads, 23 employed);
Measures Self-Objectification (Noll and Fredrickson’s Questionnaire: appearance-based and competence-based items); Objectification of Others (the importance of the attributes of others); Body Satisfaction (rating attitudes toward body parts).
Survey completion by students; Instructions; Students were asked to test one of their friends (preferably of an opposite sex between ages of 17-30).
Self-Objectification Self-objectification was significantly negatively related to body satisfaction for women, but not for men.
Women and men who self-objectify were more likely to objectify others; This relationship was much stronger for women, than for men; For women, the objectification ofother women and men was stronglyrelated, but for men it was unrelated.
Women are the main targets of sociocultural pressure to attain an idealized body, and a primary source of such perceived pressure is evaluation by men.
Higher self-objectification is related to lower body satisfaction among women, but not among men. Why can it be? Contrary to prediction, women did not objectify other women significantly more than they objectified men. What can be the reasons? Possibly many of you have experienced objectification in your life. Can you come up with any other consequences of objectification, which were not listed?
Reasoning from the original cause of objectification..Blame them
The presenter apologizes for hurting the men’s feelings..