The Gender Gap of Nudity

Friday, February 24, 2006

The Gender Gap of Nudity

The new issue of Vanity Fair (VF) is causing quite a stir. The cover pictures female stars Keira Knightley and Scarlett Johansson in the buff. A special foldout reveals Johansson's bare buttocks. Janice Min, editor of US Weekly magazine, offered this explanation for VF's cover:
"It's tried and true. You show some cleavage on an actress. You make her look sexy. You make her look hot."

... So where's the nude photo of Brad Pitt? Or George Clooney, who appears later in the issue, dressed, amid a bevy of women in flesh-toned bras and panties? Let's face it, Min says: Women do like to see sexy men -- just not with all their clothes off.

"Men just aren't viewed as sex objects in the same way that women are," Min says. "Women don't think about men being naked in the same way that men think about women." In fact, she says, at her magazine's offices, when photos come in of a male star with no shirt on, "We say, 'Gross! Put some clothes on!' "
I can't say those words ever pop into my brain. But, then again, I'm just a sex fiend.

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