Female Objectification

From Part I Chapter 5  Humans in the Myth

By T.L. Dayen

Objectify the Body; Marginalize the Mind

Objectification: to treat [someone] as an object rather than as a person.

Marginalization: to relegate; sideline; demote; downgrade; disregard.   (Merriam Webster)

The concept of female objectification is well known among feminists.  The penis may the projection of male superiority, but objectification is the projection of the human female as a sexual object of servitude.  It reduces a woman’s value to merely that which pleases a man sexually, physically, mentally or emotionally.  It is a notorious indicator of chauvinism and misogyny, and its destructive role in our contemporary society has been debated for the last hundred years.  It has become deeply rooted in our subconscious as natural and normal for the male ego to use the female body (image or real) as sensory stimuli for personal pleasure, entertainment and profits.  The female body is the foundation upon which the primal male ego bases its domination.  Every fallacy of female inferiority, male domination, and every aspect of female oppression stems from what the human female body can do, cannot do. and how the human male physiologically reacts to it.

The Physical Subjugation of “Womb-man”

We’ve learned that the physical strength and agility of the primitive male body, unencumbered by the cycles of child birth, feeding and care was critical to the primitive survival of our species; keep the women and children alive, and we keep the human race alive.  We’ve also learned how primitive man began to deem superior physical strength as in fact superior character.  We should not forget that women themselves possessed tremendous strength and tolerance to pain in order to carry, give birth, and do their part to care for and “raise humanity” in the perilous wilds.  None-the-less, it was the perceived limits of our physiological bodies; bound to the reproductive cycles of life, that ultimately lead men to deem female humans as inferior to male humans and incapable of leadership in primitive society.

As we began to evolve from “animal” mind to “human” mind however, and the inventions of civilization progressed, our survival relied less and less upon physical strength for protection or the crucial infrequent yet dangerous hunt.  Women were becoming much less vulnerable to the natural elements during pregnancy and childbirth.  Protective structures and market places took the places of men armed with spears.  “Men” were free to engage in intellectual pursuits that strengthened and fortified the mind – not just the body – and indeed the survival of much greater populations relied more upon cerebral invention than physical intervention.  It was at this time in our evolutionary history (See the chapter on The Stationary Society) where the strengths of women; compassion, cooperation, compromise, and community could have been most useful, but it will never be known what early humanity could have achieved had women only been allowed to equally participate in legal, civic, academic, scientific and political affairs.  Our minds were not valued because our bodies rendered us as appropriations for the human male.  The pheromones released by our bodies rendered men deeply possessive, jealous and distrustful of women. We were typified as a reckless threat to man’s established order.

A woman’s biological process of ovulation releases just one ova per month, and if not fertilized by just one sperm, her egg will self-destruct and exit her body as blood.  A woman can generally only give birth once a year, and her fertile years are limited.  Women once had no control over this process whatsoever.  To the contrary, a man’s sperm (seed) is released at will; at any time and place and as frequently as desired.  Millions of sperm are released in one ejaculation whether it’s in a woman’s vagina or down the drain in the shower; and a man will continue to produce sperm into very old age. Unlike women, men have control over this process.

Like the ova within her body needing to be fertilized, so too did women need to lay in wait to be impregnated by the male of our species for procreation.  Women may have possessed the source of life within them; but their faculties for creation were as far outside their control as the waning of the moon and setting of the sun. So, the egocentric fallacy that the human male is superior to the human female was largely supported early on by five sexual factors.

  • The procreation of our species relied upon the will of a man to impregnate a woman.
  • His sexual faculties are completely within his power to control.
  • He personally chooses or forcefully takes those whom will receive his seed.
  • The human male is at no time physically encumbered by his role in procreation.
  • The human female was physically encumbered by her monthly menstrual cycles, nine months of pregnancy, child birth and subsequent years of breast feeding.

The female body itself was a resource to be manipulated, allocated and appropriated no differently than every other resource of nature given to man to assure the survival of the race.  Just like the water, the soil, the fauna, the beasts, and the fowl; the female body belonged to man.  Of course, Darwin’s observations of the “survival of the fittest” conveniently fed into the male ego’s fallacy of superiority.  The perceived advantages of the male physique along with the apparent power, authority and freedom to control and determine the propagation of our race meant men were indeed the “fittest” for survival and therefore dominant!

However, men were bound by the potent and visceral urge to merge with the female.  Unlike women, men were compelled by an almost supernatural force to mate.  Of course, the primal libido was intended by nature to assure that men did indeed “choose” to mate as often as possible.  But to men, this commanding yet impalpable force over their senses was terrifying.  They could feel it but they could not see it, control it or manipulate it as they could everything else in the natural world.  If men could not dominate this force, then it could not be trusted.  This force of nature was associated with the female, and therefore, naturally the female could not be trusted.  Her body could be dominated and controlled, but somehow, she possessed an unearthly power that could twist a man’s senses; make him do things he would never do.  Neither could the female ever be trusted in the intellectual affairs of mankind where she may be able to confuse and distract the rational mind of a man.  As her power over men was always to be held suspect as a threat – man used the formidable strength and mobility afforded him by nature to physically dominate the female.  The male ego, so threatened by a dominant force that they themselves could not physically control, simply compensated for his own perceived weakness with more physical domination.  Break the body of a woman and you just might break her powerful spirit.

Man’s physical domination over women’s bodies is nothing more than the acting out of the destructive male ego’s rage it harbors for its own perceived limitations.  The destructive male ego is seething with the compulsion to compete; to battle; to stand over and rule its environment and everything in it as the dominant victor!  Logically, the primal libido was once necessary for the propagation and thus, survival, of our race, but the animal mind does not use logic.  The perceived irrationality of this inescapable innately feminine force came to be seen as a malign threat to man’s sensibilities. Therefore, man’s domination over the source of this intangible power – woman – was naturally warranted.

Female Objectification is Just “Civilized” Male Domination

In most societies women are no longer physically or socially “caged;” and within the most civilized societies, there’s an earnest and honest collective effort to buttress and sustain the image of female equality.  On the surface, women in these societies are free to do as they choose, but it’s just a cleverly civilized façade.  In the U.S. for example, women make up just over half of the population, yet are represented by less than 25 percent of our state and federal legislatures and less than 5 percent of the financial industry and corporate leadership.  Domestic and social violence against women is still rampant and poverty among women is higher than men.  Blatant socially constructed domination over women has only been replaced by subliminal socially constructed marginalization of women. The vastly pervasive and powerfully persuasive objectification of the female body is encoded into the very fabric of our social and personal lives.

Over the course of thousands of years, women learned to survive within the confines of our physical, social and psychological “paddocks” constructed by the animal mind of the dominant male ego.  Women learned to use this power they seemed to have over men; the only power they apparently possessed in a male ego dominated world.  Our bodies, allocated by the male ego as wanton objects of lustful desire, became our commodity; our leverage; our strength!  Today, women objectify themselves, and our socialization begins at birth with our pink blankets and bows.  Both boys and girls are conditioned early on as to the purpose and function of their bodies.  Boys perform for the team.  Girls pose for the camera.  Boys look at girly magazines.  Girls look in the mirror.  Boys are encouraged to explore their penis.  Girls are warned that touching themselves is evil.  Boys shower, shave and comb.  Girls shower, shave, brush, AND pluck, wax, condition, moisturize, blow dry, curl, flat iron, apply, paste, paint, tint, color, lift, support and tuck!  Girls are taught the female image seeks attention, but boys are taught the male image seeks respect.

Males discourage one another from drawing attention to their appearance, as this distracts from a man’s character; a man’s intellect. How often do you see a man sporting tight pants that accentuate his penis or a tight shirt that accentuates his chest and pecks?  Not often at all, and the general reaction to such an individual is that his must be shallow, narcissistic and petty; certainly, not a man to be taken seriouslyRespect is a suit and tie.  Attention is a form fitting sleeveless V-neck that accentuates the hips and breasts, and exposes skin.  A pair of pumps that accentuate the legs and lifts a woman’s butt. Earrings that draw attention to a woman’s cosmetically altered eyes, and a necklace that draws attention to her cleavage and slender neck.  I’ve just described to you two typical news anchors sitting side by side on a nightly broadcast.  How is it in the 21st century, that successful women are encouraged to wear as much to work as they might wear to bed, yet her male counter parts would be considered ridiculous if they exposed more than their hands and head?  Only one image is saying, “Listen to me.  I am [intelligent] man.” The other image is saying “Look at me.  I am [sexual] female.”

Both of these individuals are equally educated and qualified professionals in their field, but only one was inherently conditioned from childhood that her appearance must favorably showcase her sexuality; that her true value is measured by the number of heads that turn to gaze at her body when she enters the room.  This, indeed, is female “success.”  In fact, the more successful a woman becomes, the greater the expectation for her to look “sexy.”  Under the male ego veil of equality, the more authority a woman has in the male ego dominated society, the more her feminine appearance is scrutinized, analyzed and objectified.  It’s an undeniable fact!  The civilized dominant male ego has cunningly constructed a modern society that maintains the appearance of gender equality while still marginalizing a woman’s authority within that society through the sexually pleasing presentation of her body parts.  When the CEO of Facebook (Mark Zuckerberg) comes out on stage in tennis shoes, blue jeans and a hoodie, he is seen as a creative rebel; a confident non-conformist, comfortable in his own skin.  In stark contrast, if a female CEO addressed her shareholders sporting a similar outfit, her leadership abilities would surely be challenged, and her mental health may even be questioned.  This is the male ego rule; “If I have to listen to you, then you must remind me that you know you’re still a woman when I look at you.”  The dominant male ego will not tolerate this rule to be broken.

The less authority or success a woman has achieved in society, however, the less the expectations on her appearance, the less her opinion matters and the greater the demand for her dutiful servitude, physically and sexually.  And unfortunately, she is also more likely to be the victim of physical abuse.  But as a woman moves up the ladder of success and into positions of authoritative leadership, her opinion and contribution are given greater acceptance.  She will likely be granted a reprieve from dutiful servitude, and also less likely to be a victim of physical domestic abuse.  However, the successful woman now has a different obligation to the male ego; she must maintain a “feminine” appearance!  Her hair, her makeup, her nails, her clothing, her heels, her purse, her fragrance, her jewelry must all convince the male ego, “Look at me! I’ve not forgotten I’m a sexual female in a man’s world!

So, while a successful woman has no doubt earned her authoritative position because of her mind, it will only be maintained as long as she continues to present a feminine appearance; sexually differentiating her from her male counterpart power brokers, all for the purpose of assuaging the male ego. I am speaking here only about women in positions of authority and leadership such as finance, politics and the corporate world; where, by the way, the female perspective is so desperately needed in the 21st century.  I am not speaking of women in the intellectual pursuits of research, medicine and academia.  The very sectors of humanity where the male ego is doing the most damage to humanity and our world are the very sectors where female sexual objectification is the most rampant.

“True” Equality Means Shattering the Image

The “Separation of Church and State” along with science and medicine allowed women reproductive freedom.  Civil and civic rights allowed women to vote and participate in politics and commerce.  Yet most all of this has taken place within just the last 100 years.  The civilized world may appear to have achieved relative gender equality.  However, the oppressive male ego has managed to maintain the entrenched fallacy of female inferiority.  The independent and self-sufficient female is still held subordinate, because the capacity and potential of her mind is relegated as second to the sexual function of her body, whether for child birth or pleasure.  This message is perpetually sent a thousand ways from birth to death through the male ego dominated social construct.  The male ego animal mind image of the female body has been socially constructed to infer servitude and/or sexual stimulation.  Females themselves are socially conditioned to maintain their physical appearance in the support of this image.  What comes out of our mind; out of our mouth; is filtered through the male ego perception of our female “image.”

The problem is, an image is malleable, plaint, adjustable and it can even be false, as in the “image” of male superiority.  It is simply whatever we imagine it to be.  It certainly cannot be original. It cannot be enduring. It cannot be unwavering, and it certainly cannot be trusted.  Therefore, the female image is not original, not enduring, not unwavering and cannot be trusted.  Ladies, the male ego does not perceive the human female as fundamental!  Remember that man was created in the image of God, but women were created from the rib of man as a companion of servitude and pleasure; a receptacle for his seed and a vassal for reproduction.  The human female is simply a reflection projected upon humanity of what the male ego imagines us to be in relation to its own needs, or what it has allowed us to become in relation to our own needs. But make no mistake, this image is NOT original or creational.

What this looks like in the dawn of the 21st century, is that while a woman may experience equality in presence and participation in commerce, finance and politics; to the oppressive and dominant male ego, her place at the table is simply representative appeasement. Her voice in the conversation is nothing more than the homogenous echo of the [male] consortium with which she has aligned herself.  Aside from the display of her sexually stimulating appearance to stoke the male ego virility, the female presence is inconsequential and her participation is virtually irrelevant.  After all, females only exist as the projected image of the dominant male ego.

The first step to shattering an image is to acknowledge that the image even exists!  Regardless of what the male ego continues to project upon women, we are each original and creational human beings!  All of humanity must demand and expect the male ego to come clean and take responsibility for his projected image of the human female.  We must stop internalizing that projected image as our own!         In other words, we cannot continue to empower male ego animal mind to solely dictate and appropriate what is feminine or masculine; sexual or sensible; superficial or serious.  Humanity can no longer afford to be forced to operate within the confines of the male ego’s insatiable appetite for power, dominance and sexual control.  It is fed only by the perpetual fortification and enforcement of the image of female subordination.  It is maintained only through the unceasing socially and culturally constructed and institutionalized objectification of the female body.  It is intended only to marginalize the human female mind.

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