The consequences of self-objectification : investigating the impact of body image on female sexual functioning

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Bishop, Devin M.
Gaither, George A.
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Thesis (B.?)
Honors College
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The frequent and pervasive sexual objectification of women in Western society likely produces negative psychological outcomes such as self-objectification. Self-objectification involves criticizing and managing one's appearance, which impacts emotional and physical well¬being (Fredrickson & Roberts, 1997). Some studies have linked self-objectification to sexual dysfunction, self-consciousness during sex, and even negative attitudes about one's genitals (Moradi & Huang, 2008; Wiederman, 2000). This study anonymously surveyed approximately 533 adult females on measures of self-objectification, sexual activity, body image self - consciousness, and genital self-image. Results indicated that body image self-consciousness and genital self-image are negatively correlated with masturbatory and partnered orgasm frequency. 'When the sample was split on age (18-25 and 26 and older), body image self-consciousness was a significant partnered orgasm predictor for younger adults, whereas genital self-image was significant for the older age group. Further research might explore the impact of diversity on findings, as results may vary according to race, age, and sexual orientation.