I don’t think this is what Dave Munger had in mind when he recommended using graphics in your blog posts, at the NC Science Blogging Conference.
For the last two weeks, this post has been one of the top 3 posts on Scienceblogs – the number one post last week.
This is the kind of post I would expect to find on an adolescent male’s science blog. But hey, why not use objectification of women to boost your science blog? Apparently it works.
Afarensis, I puke upon your pseudonymous shoes.
The defining characteristic of the male gaze is that the audience is forced to regard the action and characters of a text through the perspective of a heterosexual man; the camera lingers on the curves of the female body, and events which occur to women are presented largely in the context of a man’s reaction to these events. The male gaze denies women agency, relegating them to the status of objects. The female reader or viewer must experience the narrative secondarily, by identification with the male.
I’m sure there are a number of you eager to start typing in the comments about how I’m anti-sex and I take things too seriously and hey, it’s just human nature that men like to ogle women. Talk to Mr. Zuska about the anti-sex thing; he’ll be surprised. I do take seriously incidents of gratuitous sexism because while each is just one tiny thing in and of itself, over time they add up to the mountain that is our sexist society. And men ogling women? I have no problem with men being attracted to women. I just have a problem with objectification and gratuitous use of the female body as a product for consumption. Afarensis’s post is no better than the chowderheads I had to deal with in grad school who thought soft porn calendars in the lab were just A-OK. It’s already difficult enough to be taken seriously as a woman scientist without your colleagues plastering the walls (and the science blogosphere) with cheesecake.
That blog post sends a message – whether Afarensis intended it or not – that it’s still a boys club, where women exist for the pleasure of men, not as equal colleagues in science. Crap like this doesn’t surprise me, but it sure does disappoint me.