(Above image is a screenshot from the GQ website feature on the “hottest women” in attendance at the 2014 GQ Men Of The Year Awards.) The event was held earlier this month at The Royal Opera House in London England. I recently came across some pictures and I couldn’t help but wonder at seeing what some of the women were wearing, if women are really and truly liberated from particular chains of thought. I believe in a woman’s right to wear whatever she wants whenever she wants and for whatever reason she wants to wear it. And I have no qualifications to venture to talk about such big topics as the state of women’s liberation in 2014. So I should warn that the title of this post is deceptive because you’re not going to be reading anything in depth and thought-provoking on here.
I stress that a woman should be free to wear whatever she wants whenever she wants and for whatever reason she wants to wear it; but I wonder if some women ever question why they wear some of the sexier things they wear, especially when they are attending functions like the GQ Man of the year Awards.
When you reach for the sexiest dress in your closet because you know there will be a lot of men around and the magazine will compare the women afterwards in hot list features, are you really making a liberated choice in how you dress? If you’re dressing primarily out of a desire to make it onto the top 10 list of women men would like to sleep with, are you not sort of chained to the idea that in a man’s world you’re only an object and to be of value to a man you must dress a certain way? How much of sexy dressing is about women exercising their freedom and right to show as much skin as they want and how much of it is about women believing that they need to show as much skin as possible to be noticed and wanted by men?
Doesn’t liberated mean free to walk around naked if I want?
In a way being liberated does mean being free to walk around naked if you want–provided it’s legal for you to do so where you happen to reside. But the objective of women’s liberation movements has always been to break women free of the roles they have played in history as inferior beings who exist to serve men in one way or another.
When Scout Willis went walking topless through the streets of New York City back in May of this year (2014), there was a point behind it and the point wasn’t to titillate men or get on one hot list or another. Even if she might have still ended up getting objectified by some and seen only in terms of the shape of her body and how f&%*able she was or wasn’t, her objective was to walk topless to bring attention to Instagram’s policy of censoring bare female breasts and certain double standards that allowed clearly sexual oriented pictures of women posted by men to remain on the site while non-sexual but nude photos of women were getting deleted.
Is there anything wrong with a woman dressing to titillate men?
At the end of the day women are going to compete for the attention of men. You could have a group of women who come together and decide that it’s one for all and all for one and no man is going to come between them; then along comes Mr. Wall street executive with his GQ model looks. Suddenly all for one and one for all will become every woman for herself. Stiletto heels will become back-stabbing weapons if necessary. Girls will play up whatever they consider their assets and try their level best to use these assets to titillate their target in the hope of winning the ultimate prize–a rich good looking man. The average woman becomes that much more concerned about her appearance when she’s going to be in the presence of men. Her need to feel attractive will affect the way she dresses; and if she knows there will be many attractive women present she is going to make that much more effort to try to look good enough to compete with the other women. And it’s the feedback from men that determines who wins in such a competition so women dress to get the only kind of feedback from men that matters–arousing a man’s sexual interest. Whether or not this is necessarily a good thing and/or counter to the purpose of the women’s liberation movement is for another discussion on a different kind of blog.
Copyright: outsiderzone / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: oleanderstudio / 123RF Stock Photo