It isn’t very difficult to find examples of women being exploited for capital gain. Kate Upton is a prime example. She uses her physical attributes to appeal to men for money. You can blame the men that leer at her for objectifying women, but realistically, it is her that profits from the exposure and attention. She knows it, and she uses it to her advantage. She isn’t alone. Every swimsuit model, playboy bunny, cheerleader, beauty queen, porn star, etc. knows that men want to watch them and will pay to watch them. It isn’t necessarily the men exploiting women, it is women exploiting themselves knowingly for attention and monetary gain.
The looming question then, is “Are these women ruining it for the rest of us mere mortals that choose not to walk braless down Hollywood boulevard strutting our sex appeal, or are they paving the way for a kinder gentler world where women are worshipped as goddesses?” Do their actions negate the more cerebral contributions women make to society? Will men automatically take all women less seriously because of women that exploit their physical beauty? These women obviously do not care if they have a negative impact on women in general, at least they don’t look like they will be ceasing to book photo shoots any time soon, but should we?
With that said, I do think there is a preconceived notion that pretty people are typical less intelligent. I don’t think it has anything to do with an inability to be brilliant. I think it has more to do with learning that your physical attributes can be used to obtain objects of desire with less effort than academic pursuits, so prettier people have an incentive to cultivate their behavioral and grooming skills more so than their academic abilities. If your aspiration is to become a trophy wife or husband, (yes, there are both) then what value are you going to see in mastering algebra?
Men are visual creatures. They like to look at women and women are beautiful. Except for the brief moment that a man takes to size you up and determine if he thinks you are “Hot or Not”, I don’t think most men give much thought to the objectification of women. I’ve never heard a man group all women into a single category after viewing lewd or provocative pictures. It would seem that it is women that spend the most time discussing it and criticizing the women that capitalize on it, which appears to be more motivated by jealous behavior and envy than any factual justification that their actions prevent the rest of us from being taken seriously.
Kate Upton photos courtesy of hotnessrater.com