We wonder if charlie_grrl and other anti lads mags “feminist” crusaders have seen this.
Seems the Daily Mail is right up their street. Hey it may be overtly anti women’s rights (anti abortion, anti equal pay, anti work maternity rights) but at least it gives plently of time to people who hate lads mags just as they do! Lol!
From the Daily Mail:
Women blame lads’ mags for sexual exploitation – yet are they are just as guilty?
Last updated at 09:48am on 14th September 2007 Comments (8)
When I became the editor of Esquire magazine in the 1990s, I found the question of how to celebrate women’s sexuality in a non-sexist way tricky.Could you print photos of women showing their breasts or their bottoms in ways that were not sexist, exploitative and demeaning to women?
For a time, I think we succeeded.
For one thing, the magazine always featured women in many others ways – as writers, interview subjects, as people to take seriously.
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Every month, magazines such as FHM, and now Zoo and Nuts, serve up page after page of breasts, bottoms and sexual titillation, says Rosie Boycott
I never published a photograph that I thought made the woman look subjugated: they always looked as though they were having as much fun as anyone and they were always wearing bikinis.
But as the years went by and the pressure to push up circulation figures increased as other magazines entered the market, so, too, did the pressure to show much more naked flesh of such girls.
The “girly” photographs changed; from women who seemed to say “I’m your equal and I’m beautiful” to something much more sinister.
The models were younger, more vulnerable; and while Esquire never, I believe, stooped towards any form of exploitation, the same could not be said for the rest of the lads’ magazine stable.
Every month, magazines such as FHM, and now Zoo and Nuts, serve up page after page of breasts, bottoms and sexual titillation.
No women write for these magazines, unless you count the strange agony aunts who answer readers’ sexual queries.
These tend to be stern-looking women with horn-rimmed glasses and a lot of cleavage, and they dispense their smutty advice in a clinically pornographic tone.
Leafing through one recently, the only ‘real’ woman I found was the recordbreaking yachtswoman Dame Ellen MacArthur, who was dragged through the mud and described in highly offensive terms (which I don’t want to repeat here).
The other women on their pages are known only by their first names and they are always quoted as being “hot and ready”.
The message these mags transmit is clear: women are there to be used sexually for men’s pleasure and all women – secretly or not – are longing for rough sex and plenty of it.
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Lesbianism is frequently featured, served up for the delectation of the readers.
There are horrible jokes about “poo”, as well as women posing on all fours, bottoms towards the camera, women wearing handcuffs and dog collars, wielding whips and chains.
Here, the sex is ice-cold, passionless and cruel: it depicts a world where relationships in any meaningful sense don’t exist, their place taken by bondage, exploitation and a certain cruelty. But now this already grim content has plumbed new depths.
I’m pleased that Loaded, which once sold half a million copies a week has recorded a 35 per cent drop in circulation and that FHM fell 16 per cent in the same period, but with the loss of sales has come even more demeaning editorial.
This week, I, along with every other woman I know, was shocked to hear that FHM had published a photograph of a topless 14-year-old girl without her consent. The photo had been sent in by her boyfriend.
But what does this say about their relationship? Clearly, unless he was planning to dump her, he thought his actions would meet her approval and that she would be happy to have her body exposed for hordes of randy teenage boys to salivate over.
Equally clearly, his action tells us that he regards sending a snap of his semi-naked girlfriend to a magazine where her body will be ogled by a group of strangers as an entirely acceptable and – no doubt – cool act, one that his peer group will applaud.
That’s bad enough, but what was truly shocking was to learn that FHM receives more than 1,000 topless submissions from women every week (and many of them are probably from underage girls).
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The Nuts website has a page called Assess My Breasts, in which readers are invited to rate the breasts and bottoms on display.
Nuts shows pictures of readers’ girlfriends – not the whole girl, just the breasts with the heads cut off. Every one of these has been sent in by a young woman.
And this forces us to ask the truly difficult question: just how much are women themselves complicit in this exploitative and degrading business?
Many of the magazines have female publishers, one of whom appeared on the Today programme this week with feminist Natasha Walter to discuss the launch of Nuts’ new cable TV channel.
The Nuts’ executive argued that the women who appeared on the channel (and, by extension, in the magazine) “celebrated” and “respected” women.
Sadly, this woman cannot be described as either young or innocent and this collusion and complicity in the newstyle exploitation of women is both sad and, to me, scary.
Thirty-five years ago this summer, when I co-founded Spare Rib magazine, our goals were so different. We wanted to empower women to become the equal of men in the workplace, the home and the bedroom.
Equal meant just that: a world where neither gender exploited the other. But in order to be taken seriously by men, women needed first to learn to take themselves seriously.
And to a large extent, we did, forging ahead in our careers, excelling in the classroom and carving out our place in the professions. We tried to be the best mums and workers we could be. We tried, above all, to be decent women who respected ourselves.
Yet, over the years, several things have happened that worry me. One is our increasing fixation on looks and our apparent belief that what we look like determines who we are.
The influence of programmes such as Sex And The City seem to have spread the idea that promiscuous sex is a cool and cultish goal for young women to pursue.
Maybe it was only to be expected that there would be small backlash against some of the more blue-stocking aspects of the women’s movement, but the new vogue to re-embrace ‘girliness’ seems to me to have happened at the expense of equality and credibility.
On social networking websites such as Facebook, teenage girls post pictures of themselves showing their breasts.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out what every young man looking will think: she’s available for sex and she wants it. How can that be combined with an attitude of respect and equality?
We’ve moved so far from the straitlaced days of my youth to today’s culture where, sexually, apparently anything goes.
No one – at the risk of looking oldfashioned and stuffy – is willing to stand up and question current behaviour.
I went through a wildly promiscuous phase in my youth – and it left me with nothing but sadness and a sense of waste.
I did it because I thought it made me look cool (and, in truth, I always hoped it might lead to something special). But that sort of sex is merely debasing and dehumanising.
It never leads to anything meaningful.
This current generation of young women who believe they will find any sort of satisfaction, emotional or sexual, through allowing themselves to become the sex objects of young men’s fantasies are fueling a sorry state of affairs.
They want to be taken seriously, but, by behaving like this, no one can blame the young men who treat them like sex objects and little else.
The Daily Mail have not printed Boycot’s views out of concern over the exploitation of women or out of concen for women’s rights but to push their own agenda that anything with a whiff of sex in it is disgusting and immoral.
Notice how they divulge in detail all the most salacious (and apparently “exploitative, sex and demeaning”) aspects of lads mags. So much for their apparent concern for women’s rights eh?
But they do this just to whip up outrage amongst their middle England readers about “disgusting filthy pornography”.
As for Boycot she clearly has a dislike for women models who do anything which could be remotly sexually graitifying to men.