Look @ me 2.0: self-sexualization in Facebook photographs, self-objectification, and body image
Ruckel, Lindsay M.
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SubjectBody image in women; Online social networks Psychological aspects; Self-perception in women; Women sexual behavior; Facebook (Firm) Social aspects; Objectification
Growing attention has been paid to examining people’s self-presentation on Social Networking Sites (SNSs). To date, one study has explored the extent to which women present themselves in a sexualized way in their profile photographs on SNSs. SNSs provide a unique opportunity for self-sexualization, or the presentation of one’s body in a sexually objectifying way for others’ evaluation. The current study tested the relationship between women’s self-objectification and their self-sexualization in their Facebook profile photographs. This work also investigated how self-sexualization relates to body image satisfaction, internalization of the “thin ideal”, and how contingent self-worth is on appearance. Facebook profile photographs of 100 women, ranging from 18-49 years old were coded for self-sexualization. Results suggested that women who reported higher levels of self-objectification and who identified more strongly with the appearance-contingency of self-worth were more likely to self-sexualize in their Facebook profile photographs. However, no relationship was found between self-sexualization and internalization of the “thin ideal” or body image satisfaction. Potential implications and directions for future research are explored.
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