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Model
Elizabeta Rosandic
Posts: 939
Santa Fe, New Mexico, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:
You are avoiding the fact that your scenario does not fit the definition of objectification you offered.  Being passive or aggressive, cat-calls, or being embarrassed also do not fit that definition, which relates to my original point: It's incredibly rare that a women would ever be perceived in a way that meets that definition.

Right, I'm sure that guys who make cat-calls at me are very interested in my personality and brains as well.

What I am trying to communicate to you is that the gender role of passivity for women is what has created that definition. In other words, women are expected to sit quietly, so to speak, and be looked at- they are objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at enticingly BECAUSE of their expected passivity. I've offered you plenty of reasons for this.

May 02 12 01:39 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Abbitt Photography
Posts: 11,364
Oakland Acres, Iowa, US


Elizabeta Rose wrote:

Right, I'm sure that guys who make cat-calls at me are very interested in my personality and brains as well.

What I am trying to communicate to you is that the gender role of passivity for women is what has created that definition. In other words, women are expected to sit quietly, so to speak, and be looked at- they are objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at enticingly BECAUSE of their expected passivity. I've offered you plenty of reasons for this.

And do you actually believe any significant percent of people actually believe women "are objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at...".

I think it's incredibly rare that anyone would ever look at a woman or a photo of a woman and actually think that.  Everyone knows that women, even women who are depicted in a sexual way serve functions that go beyond being looked at.

May 02 12 10:07 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Elizabeta Rosandic
Posts: 939
Santa Fe, New Mexico, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:
I think it's incredibly rare that anyone would ever look at a woman or a photo of a woman and actually think that.  Everyone knows that women, even women who are depicted in a sexual way serve functions that go beyond being looked at.

Then I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. I've tried communicating my reasoning behind my statement but it obviously isn't being absorbed.

May 02 12 11:17 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Abbitt Photography
Posts: 11,364
Oakland Acres, Iowa, US


Elizabeta Rose wrote:

Then I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. I've tried communicating my reasoning behind my statement but it obviously isn't being absorbed.

What you don't seem to see is that the examples you've given and points you make do not fit the definition you yourself offered of being objectified. 

You can't hold out an incredibly high definition of objectification and then talk about what a problem it is by giving examples and points which do not meet that definition.  You need to either accept that definition is so extreme its almost never met, in which case objectification rarely exists, or you need to accept it's not a good definition of objectification.

May 02 12 11:42 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Elizabeta Rosandic
Posts: 939
Santa Fe, New Mexico, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:
What you don't seem to see is that the examples you've given and points you make do not fit the definition you yourself offered of being objectified.

Again, I have tried to explain to you how these examples fit. It is not communicating. Thank you for your time.

May 02 12 11:53 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Abbitt Photography
Posts: 11,364
Oakland Acres, Iowa, US


Elizabeta Rose wrote:
Again, I have tried to explain to you how these examples fit. It is not communicating. Thank you for your time.

You've explained why you think they are an issue, but they do not fit the definition you offered.   

Your definition of objectification was:  "that you are portraying women as passive objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at enticingly."

You the go on to state several examples, showing how prevalent objectification is, but your examples do not meet that definition.

Someone saying they like the way my car looks, does not mean people think it does not function as transportation.  Similarly, the fact one person makes a cat call at you, does not mean you are viewed only as an object that serves no function than to be looked at enticingly. The vast majority of people, including the person making the comment can still realize you are more than that.

Therefore, given your definition of objectification, you need to accept that the examples you speak of are not objectification, or you need to offer a different definition of objectification that fits your examples.

Your logic is like like me stating my small town is crime ridden with lots of felonies and violent crime, and then offer examples of how I often find litter in my yard and once had my bike stolen.   I either need to change my definition of crime to include misdemeanors or admit felonies and violent crime are exceptionally rare.

I'm not claiming cat calls are warranted or that the person making a cat call is interested in your brains, but that is not an example which meets the very high standard of objectification you provided.  It's the same with an image. The fact someone may like it visually, does not meet the definition you offered of objectification.  People realize the person depicted has a function in life beyond being looked at.

May 02 12 01:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Elizabeta Rosandic
Posts: 939
Santa Fe, New Mexico, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:
People realize the person depicted has a function in life beyond being looked at.

Ok, that's great. You're not getting my point and repeating yourself a lot so I'm out of here. Kbye.

May 02 12 02:26 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
MC Photo
Posts: 4,144
New York, New York, US


Elizabeta Rose wrote:
I just wrote a paper for a Feminist Aesthetics class at my college on this subject, so you have me all excited now big_smile.

Bascially, the objectification of women in artwork and photographs is the portrayal of women whose function is to be observed, hence what is known as the "masculine gaze" (notice I use the word "masculine", not "male"). It is the idea that women are the observed, men are the observers. Women are passive, men are aggressive. This same ideology has lead to other societal gender roles that we know and love today.

If you're objectifying women (and I haven't looked at your port so I can't give my personal opinion on your work), it means, in feminist theory, that you are portraying women as passive objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at enticingly. One could certainly argue that this is the case in any image made of a woman, and the line of where portrayal meets objectification is blurry in many cases. There are, however, certain qualities in images that feminist historians have dubbed as "objectification". They include having the eyes and head turned down so that the subject is not making eye-contact with the viewer and the woman having little to no body hair with the genitals reduced to almost nothing.

Here are some examples of this in art:

http://www.artclon.com/paintings/standi … 38841.html

http://www.artvalue.com/auctionresult-- … 049761.htm

Jane Ussher wrote a great essay about this subject in the 90's. She says the reasoning behind this treatment of women is because of the fear of not being able to be aggressive, or "perform", on the part of the man. If there is no aggression in the woman, then the man is the aggressor by default. To quote her, "women are afraid of being raped, men are afraid of being laughed at".

EDIT: Freude calls this "scopophilia", or "the love of looking".

Part of me thinks that the aggressive male/passive female idea is an inadequately deep view of the dynamic. Substitute dominant for aggressive and submissive for passive, and that's a very recognizable relationship, except the sub is in some ways the master because they have the control over what's allowed to happen.

You see that in the relationship between llamas who do paid shoots only, and certainly in cam shows.

With the cat call example, women's underlying fear may prevent them from seeing that all they have to do is turn around and say "With you? Hahahah!" and now the man is being laughed at.

I think that the aggressive/passive view implies a certain power relationship, but that's not necessarily accurate.

May 02 12 04:36 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
MC Photo
Posts: 4,144
New York, New York, US


Elizabeta Rose wrote:
.

Furthermore, heterosexual men feel it is inappropriate to be treated as viewable objects. I have female friends who have cat-called men for fun and it caused the upmost confusion within the people around them, while when men do such things most people do not react. I also work for artists often who complain that it is difficult to get nude male models to pose for them due to strenuous demands on the part of the mode, leading one to believe that they are extremely uncomfortable being looked at. I have had this experience as an artist myself. Female models, on the other hand, tend to lack such demands overall because the social construction for the role of woman is one of being observed, while the opposite is the case for men.

That's one reason the get so freaked out by homosexual men - it's a time where the roles have been flipped and they are aware of being looked at as an object.

May 02 12 04:40 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
MC Photo
Posts: 4,144
New York, New York, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:

What you don't seem to see is that the examples you've given and points you make do not fit the definition you yourself offered of being objectified. 

You can't hold out an incredibly high definition of objectification and then talk about what a problem it is by giving examples and points which do not meet that definition.  You need to either accept that definition is so extreme its almost never met, in which case objectification rarely exists, or you need to accept it's not a good definition of objectification.

You're getting hung up on wording. You have to look at meaning, not the literal definition. The "no other purpose" is hyperbolic attention grabbing from the women who first put these theories forth. And they were right to be hyperbolic because the idea was to provide an extreme contrast.

Of course construction workers don't think that women are just for looking at, they think they are for having sex with, and probably for things like cooking and cleaning.

Elizabeta is defining in depth the meaning of that phrase, just ignore the phrase and read the rest or maybe use robotified in place of objectified.

Robots are not capable of independent thought, only what man has taught/programmed them to do. Ultimately a robot is helpless. A robot is the metal device, the body. The robot's brain is not a physical thing, it's the software programming, which is abstract. A robot has specialized, limited capabilities, that are connecedt to it's body, it's physical design. Once great thing is that robots don't have feelings, or ideas, just their mindless specialty. "Watch" the robot work. There's no point in inviting a robot to managment meetings, they're just for looking at, watching them work.

You also need to realize that that definition is not from 2012 when we have women who are CEO's or have a salary that's bigger than their spouses. No one would would say that "women are only good for looking at" unless they were a radio host trying to rile people up, but there have been times when people did believe that.

May 02 12 05:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
MC Photo
Posts: 4,144
New York, New York, US


Abbitt Photography wrote:
You've explained why you think they are an issue, but they do not fit the definition you offered.   

Your definition of objectification was:  "that you are portraying women as passive objects of desire who serve no other function than to be looked at enticingly."

You the go on to state several examples, showing how prevalent objectification is, but your examples do not meet that definition.

Someone saying they like the way my car looks, does not mean people think it does not function as transportation.  Similarly, the fact one person makes a cat call at you, does not mean you are viewed only as an object that serves no function than to be looked at enticingly. The vast majority of people, including the person making the comment can still realize you are more than that.

Therefore, given your definition of objectification, you need to accept that the examples you speak of are not objectification, or you need to offer a different definition of objectification that fits your examples.

Your logic is like like me stating my small town is crime ridden with lots of felonies and violent crime, and then offer examples of how I often find litter in my yard and once had my bike stolen.   I either need to change my definition of crime to include misdemeanors or admit felonies and violent crime are exceptionally rare.

I'm not claiming cat calls are warranted or that the person making a cat call is interested in your brains, but that is not an example which meets the very high standard of objectification you provided.  It's the same with an image. The fact someone may like it visually, does not meet the definition you offered of objectification.  People realize the person depicted has a function in life beyond being looked at.

Her definition is all of the things she's describing. What you are considering her definition is a summary.

The idea that one inaccurate phrase discounts 100% of the other points being made is profoundly illogical.

Why don't you go back through her posts at tell her what she's defined with her examples. Her examples are all accurate examples of objectification, if you don't think that summary definition matches, it would be very interesting to hear what definition her examples add up to.


Or were you just looking and not listening?

May 02 12 05:04 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Abbitt Photography
Posts: 11,364
Oakland Acres, Iowa, US


MC Photo wrote:
You also need to realize that that definition is not from 2012 when we have women who are CEO's or have a salary that's bigger than their spouses. No one would would say that "women are only good for looking at"

That's exactly the definition she offered. (and repeated several times)

I agree it's outdated and that nobody would ever say that. - that's my entire point.   She should either admit that by her definition people are never objectified, or she should revise her definition.  She's purposely using an outdated, extreme definition of objectification that her examples don't support in attempt to paint a picture that is different from what it really is and should be called on that.

You freely admit that nobody believes "woman are only good for looking at", but that is precisely her claim and despite being challenged on that several times, she refuses to revise that claim.

I'm not discounting her feelings or points. They are legitimate, but they don't come close to meeting the definition of objectification she refuses to back off of.

And like her, I'm done discussing this.

May 02 12 05:34 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Carle Photography
Posts: 9,227
Oakland, California, US


7 years later I'm still proud to have gotten nekked for Uncle Don.

Woot!
May 02 12 06:39 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
D. Brian Nelson
Posts: 5,477
Rapid City, South Dakota, US


Death of Field wrote:
7 years later I'm still proud to have gotten nekked for Uncle Don.

Woot!

And I objectified the hell outta you!

Don

May 02 12 08:04 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dario Western
Posts: 619
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


MC Photo wrote:

That's one reason they get so freaked out by homosexual men - it's a time where the roles have been flipped and they are aware of being looked at as an object.

It's pure sexism, hypocrisy and homophobia IMHO. 

If men can catcall women and thought of as being clever, smart and manly for doing so, then why shouldn't women be allowed to do the same thing without others freaking out?  Aren't we supposed to be living in an age of equality between the sexes? 

I personally admire women who rebel against what is "ladylike" and "unladylike" and just do whatever makes them feel happy, and if that means showing public appreciation for a guy who is attractive to them then good on them I say.  :-D

May 02 12 09:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Michael Kerrek
Posts: 1,389
Orlando, Florida, US


Dario Western wrote:
If men can catcall women and thought of as being clever, smart and manly for doing so, then why shouldn't women be allowed to do the same thing without others freaking out?  Aren't we supposed to be living in an age of equality between the sexes?

Overwhelmingly, I have always seen far more judgment and negativity from other women, when it comes to women who are "equally" comfortable and toward with their sexuality. Ultimately, though there are plenty of douchebag judgmental men, it's other women who are the most harsh and relentless with the "oh she's a slut" type remarks. Other women are the worst culprits when it comes to any random female being called a slut, skank, etc., just for being secure and comfortable- and adult- with their sexuality.

YMMV.

May 03 12 07:03 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Elizabeta Rosandic
Posts: 939
Santa Fe, New Mexico, US


Michael Kerrek wrote:
Overwhelmingly, I have always seen far more judgment and negativity from other women, when it comes to women who are "equally" comfortable and toward with their sexuality. Ultimately, though there are plenty of douchebag judgmental men, it's other women who are the most harsh and relentless with the "oh she's a slut" type remarks. Other women are the worst culprits when it comes to any random female being called a slut, skank, etc., just for being secure and comfortable- and adult- with their sexuality.

YMMV.

Cat-calling doesn't mean calling someone a slut or something. When I brought that up I was refering to men who will yell at women on the street like "Hey baby, damn you look sexy in that dress girl".

May 03 12 07:37 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Click Hamilton
Posts: 34,200
San Diego, California, US


Vera Moore wrote:
haha Nice.  I think the real issue of objectification on women is that it is everywhere, almost a bit too much.  If men and women were both objectified the same amount it wouldn't be as big of a deal. Objectification of women just stems from the whole women not feeling equal to men.  The amount of nudity and focus I see of women in the media compared to men is not even close.  Honestly...I'd like to see a little more guy rather than a bunch on chics everywhere.  Sex sells and I'm a straight female not a male wink

Beauty is the purgation of superfluities.

How does that sound?

bunny

May 04 12 03:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
D. Brian Nelson
Posts: 5,477
Rapid City, South Dakota, US


Click Hamilton wrote:

Beauty is the purgation of superfluities.

How does that sound?

bunny

A bit pretentious, and it doesn't parse. Long time, Click!

-Don

May 04 12 07:07 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Click Hamilton
Posts: 34,200
San Diego, California, US


D. Brian Nelson wrote:
A bit pretentious, and it doesn't parse. Long time, Click!

Yeah, I know.

I'm still trying to figure out what Michelangelo was thinking when he said that. It's not easy for me to put the religious stuff in context.

Maybe something was lost in the translation from Italian?

I love his work anyway.


tongue

May 04 12 10:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
LLOYD WRIGHT
Posts: 664
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom


the mighty reds are
playing chelsea in the fa
cup final this afternoon!
May 04 12 10:47 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Darkness Overcomes Me
Posts: 1,077
Washington, District of Columbia, US


It sounds like your son is another brainwashed Brownie...
May 04 12 10:49 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rude Bwoy
Posts: 74
Manchester, England, United Kingdom


D. Brian Nelson wrote:
When my #2 son was studying philosophy at Brown, we had an argument.  He'd taken a course on the history of feminist philosophy and was convinced that my objectification of women via photograpahy was devaluing women as a gender.   I argued that by eschewing traditional image as ownership or male sex fantasy images, that I was more or less doing portraiture, or photography of women as they are, or possibly as they should be.  (Should be?  According to whom?  Me, I guess.  How godlike of me... and how objectifying.)

Since that conversation I've thought more about it.  I do idealize the women in my photographs.  I intentionally make them look beautiful, whether or not beauty is the primary value any person, male or female, should have.  On the other hand, all I have to work with is light reflecting from surfaces, so maybe beauty is all that I can show, other virtues being just too hard.

And photography, particularly of women, does objectify in the sense that they are being substituted for other traditional subjects like "apple, fish, bowl, platter."  They are treated photographically as that still life would be - arranged, lit and recorded.

With the advice of a model I will be photographing soon, I've picked up a book on feminist sexuality with the intent of learning some vocabulary.  What I'm learning instead is some of the internal landscaping of women and how much more complex it has been forced to become because of the culture.  More complex than the internals of men, particularly sexually. 

Aside from my son, no one's accused me of objectifying women.  Except me.  I think about it all the time.  And that's a problem in that the culture is my culture too and everything I do or think is influenced by it.  Do I want to own the women in my photographs, either in some real sense or in that photograph as ownership sense?  Well, yes and no I guess.  Viewers of the photographs will make some judgements about my relationships with the models, of course.  And I'm not going to correct any beneficial misconceptions.  But I also want the photographs to be useful in learning about and making judgements about women in general and the models specifically. 

Thoughts?

-Don

Love your port...

May 05 12 07:06 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
D. Brian Nelson
Posts: 5,477
Rapid City, South Dakota, US


Thanks.

D
Oct 06 12 12:10 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
NothingIsRealButTheGirl
Posts: 32,022
Los Angeles, California, US


How the hell did I manage to stay out of this thread? I was a member then.
Oct 06 12 12:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Fotografica Gregor
Posts: 4,066
Alexandria, Virginia, US


Model Mayhem seems to be to be largely about women taking advantage of being "objectified" -  making it profitable.

This is of course not a new thing - it has been done in many ways since time immemorial - since the "oldest profession".

The best of all worlds in a transaction in a free market is when people in a transaction take advantage of one another and willingly provide that advantage in exchange for what they want.

I am all for social justice and economic justice for women and all people really

but a lot of "feminist philosophy" is utter crap and ignorant of both market economics and evolutionary biology.
Oct 06 12 12:27 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dan K Photography
Posts: 5,409
STATEN ISLAND, New York, US


NothingIsRealButTheGirl wrote:
How the hell did I manage to stay out of this thread? I was a member then.

You need a new hobby.

Oct 06 12 12:27 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Robert Lynch
Posts: 2,482
Bowie, Maryland, US


Rude Bwoy wrote: May 05 12 07:06 am
Love your port...

D. Brian Nelson wrote: Oct 06 12 12:10 pm
Thanks.

D

Well, that was a critically important reason to revive a zombie thread.

Oct 06 12 04:33 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
J Jessica
Posts: 2,055
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, US


I wouldn't mind being an object.
^_^
Oct 06 12 06:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Image Magik
Posts: 1,067
New Orleans, Louisiana, US


Women pay to look beautiful and men pay to be with beautiful women. Sounds like commerce to me:-)
Oct 06 12 06:19 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ken Marcus Studios
Posts: 8,422
Los Angeles, California, US


It amazes me how many years this thread has gone on . . . .

Started Dec. 24th 2005 and lay dormant for 7 years until april of this year

WoW !

If Don only knew what he started !

KM
Oct 06 12 06:39 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Bilsen Galleries
Posts: 368
CORTLANDT MANOR, New York, US


Darkness Overcomes Me wrote:
It sounds like your son is another brainwashed Brownie...

This.  I hope you didn't pay the fortune it cost for him to learn this drivel.

Oct 06 12 07:30 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
V Laroche
Posts: 2,745
New Orleans, Louisiana, US


Darkness Overcomes Me wrote:
It sounds like your son is another brainwashed Brownie...

Of course! Anyone with different ideas than you has clearly been brainwashed!

Oct 06 12 10:36 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
NothingIsRealButTheGirl
Posts: 32,022
Los Angeles, California, US


Ken Marcus Studios wrote:
If Don only knew what he started !

KM

He knows. He posted this year.

Oct 06 12 10:40 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
MesmerEyes Photography
Posts: 2,838
Tyler, Texas, US


Ok, so I read the entire thread and have come to the conclusion that the posters back then knew how to have a meaningful debate, put their thoughts down coherently, didn't get upset because someone didn't change their position, or post something that had nothing to do with the discussion.

On a more relevant note, art can objectify or not objectify. Why worry about what you can not change. And who says that some objectification here and there is a totally bad thing? (Not the definition of the objectification used by feminist of the 70s)
Oct 07 12 08:48 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
T Brown
Posts: 2,136
Traverse City, Michigan, US


of course they objectify women, and photos of cars objectify cars, and food of food, and so on.

How far the objectification goes is dependant upon the photographer, model, and viewer.
Oct 07 12 08:51 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AJScalzitti
Posts: 12,249
Atlanta, Georgia, US


Dang we need to use a wooden stake to kill this thing...
Oct 07 12 08:55 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Cole Morrison
Posts: 3,958
Portland, Oregon, US


Its a very fine line. What was the woman's intended outcome for the photo she posed for? Did she want to be SEXUALLY attractive? Did she want to be modest? Did she hope to allure men or become something a man MAY get pleasure from or does she simply not care either way?
Thats how I would define it. For the same reasons women in porn can still consider themselves as feminists. Its consensual. Its intended. Its empowering her as a woman.She is not being USED as an object, she is ALLOWING men to view her in that way when she wants and how she wants.

Just fleeting thoughts from a fellow feminist. I didnt read any comments here so I'm not sure whats been covered already or not.
Oct 07 12 08:55 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
D. Brian Nelson
Posts: 5,477
Rapid City, South Dakota, US


Bump.
Nov 17 13 01:32 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,018
Columbus, Ohio, US


D. Brian Nelson wrote:
Bump.

Yes, some do IMHO.

Do you re-visit any of your other 8 yr old threads often? smile
Good day.

Nov 17 13 01:42 pm  Link  Quote 
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