When men are objectified, it’s often as a male-power fantasy, whereas women are usually objectified as passive objects of a cishet male gaze. Where do you think these ads for a Korean gym fit in?
I stopped outside this Jeju City gym for the terribly photoshopped, giraffe-like figure of the man alone.
Then I noticed the banner of the woman behind me, presumably aimed at encouraging female customers to join. The contrast between his cockiness and her languid pose, seductively pulling down her leggings, immediately reminded me of this classic Shortpacked comic by David Willis:
What do you think? Are these gym ads an example of false equivalence?
Technically, the guy is pulling his pants down too—which took me a long time to notice, because it feels less integral to the concept as added after the fact, unlike the woman who was instructed to pose seductively from the get-go.
Or am I just saying that because I’m a cishet guy, instinctively feeling competitive and so immediately drawn to his pecs? Whereas cishet women reading first noticed his open crotch?
Please let me know in the comments below, or on Facebook or Twitter!
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- Korean Lolita Nationalism: It’s a thing, and this is how it works
- Korean Sociological Image #51: Male Objectification and Double Standards
- Korean Sociological Image #86: Sex and the Single Korean (Household)
- Korean Sociological Image #91: Shameless Hussy Corrupts Korean Youth
- Sex, Self-Confidence, and Social Activism: When Women Made Soju Ads
- Consent is Sexy: SISTAR, slut-shaming, and sexual objectification in the Korean idol system
- “Spring Girls,” by Sunwoo Jung-a, Is Both Feminist and as Sexy as Hell. Lets Give It the Attention It Deserves.
- Watching SPICA’s “Tonight” is an Awesome Teaching Moment About the Male Gaze. Here’s Why. (Part 1 of 3)
If you reside in South Korea, you can donate via wire transfer: Turnbull James Edward (Kookmin Bank/국민은행, 563401-01-214324)