Date of Publication
Women and Gender Studies
“All women live in sexual objectification the way fish live in water.”
(Catharine MacKinnon, 1989)
Have you ever watched a beauty pageant contest? What about mainstream pornography? These two capitalistic industries continue to enforce the misogynistic view that the female body is to be consumed by the male population. I argue that the societal standards we commonly consider the norm affect female embodiment and what it means to be a woman in contemporary society. Beauty standards, gender roles, sexualization, objectification, and the male gaze all point towards this ideology that the female body is to be consumed by men. Pageantry and pornography only continue to enforce this ideology as the two industries flourish off the femininity of the contestants and actresses. In this paper I argue, we need to abandon these societal standards that control female bodies and behaviors in a heteropatriarchal world. I want to advocate freedom from the “male gaze” for all women.
Wright, Kelsey, "Pageantry to Pornography: Gazing at and Selling Female Bodies" (2017). Senior Honors Theses. 160.