Sex is Not the Only Way to Sell
The Fordham Observer, February 8, 2017
By Jessica Zimmermann
Why do guidelines on how “you can prevent” sexual harassment fail to actually prevent sexual harassment? They perpetuate a climate in which sexual assault is the inevitable norm, and it is the burden of potential victims to ward off potential attackers.
The mindset that women are objects that exist for the pleasure of men is deeply rooted in our cultural consciousness. In her award-winning documentary, “Killing Us Softly,” Jean Kilbourne, Ed.D., senior scholar at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW), shows us that this mindset is so culturally relevant that sexually objectifying images of women are used to sell us almost any given product. The documentary examines the objectification and dehumanization of women in advertising in the U.S. According to Kilbourne, when a woman viewed as a thing instead a person, it becomes easier to justify violence against “it” rather than “her.”