• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9
  10. 10
    10
  11. 11
    11
  12. 12
    12
  13. 13
    13

A study into social representations of sexuality

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Contents Page Abstract Page 2 Introduction Pages 3-8 Methods Results Discussion References Page 9 Appendix 1 Page 10 Appendix 2 Page 11 Appendix 3 Page 12 Abstract The main aim of this study was to investigate social representations of sexuality through the media of FHM magazine, in terms of body exposure. The hypotheses were that there would be more partially clothed women displayed than partially clothed men, and more fully clothed men displayed than women. This was a content analysis where all people featured in the magazine that were larger than an eighth of an A4 sheet of paper were counted. The men and women were classified separately into two categories: partially clothed or fully clothed. It was found that the greater proportion of those partially clothed were women, and the majority of those fully clothed were men. The results were statistically significant. This study concluded that women are portrayed as sexual objects more than men in FHM magazine. Introduction Social representations are common sense ideas, thoughts, images and knowledge which members of a group share, that help us to interpret and understand our social world. They explain attitudes towards complex concepts such as sexuality, intelligence or education. (However, they differ from culture to culture, for example, the concept of education would mean something different to a Maori tribesman compared to a westernised American.) ...read more.

Middle

See Appendix 1 for examples. Procedures Every person displayed in all eight magazines, whether they were female or male from an advertisement, feature or a photograph with an article was counted, on the condition that their bodies occupied a larger space than an eighth of an A4 size sheet of paper. The small advertisements at the back of the magazine were discounted for practical reasons. The men and women were classified separately into two categories: partially clothed or fully clothed. To operationalise our findings precisely and increase inter-rater reliability, it was agreed that a 'fully clothed' person would have to be wearing enough to be considered presentable in public. That is to say a 'partially clothed' person would have areas of the body exposed that would be inappropriate for public display, for example the torso (and breasts in females), buttocks and upper thigh. Pilot Study Our pilot study helped us to ensure our methods were practical, for example, to determine which images should be included in the study. We realised that it would be painstakingly difficult to count every single small advertisement at the back of each magazine, therefore it was decided that they would be discounted. To ensure there was a specific boundary for this rule, it was settled that only the bodies larger than an eighth of an A4 sheet of paper would be included. ...read more.

Conclusion

inferior positions on the floor or superior positions on a chair) or how men and women posed differently (animalistic poses perhaps suggesting submission and inferiority compared to bold, strong, upright poses). If we perceive these results to be an accurate depiction of sexuality in society's view, they are useful in determining certain social representations of men and women. Sexuality was operationalised by the amount of body exposure, and from finding that women were displayed as partially clothed much more than men, we could suggest that this illustrates how women are thought of as sexual objects of desire, supported by Courtney and Lockeretz's (1971) findings (70% of women in the advertisements studied were used for decorative purposes), rather than independent people on a level of equality with men. The equality between the sexes perpetuates against the common sense theory, and therefore is much harder to overcome. Our research could be extended by investigating other magazines that are geared towards different sectors of society, such as teenagers, young women, older women, older men and non-gender magazines - this magazine may be biased towards young men because exposure of women is in their interest. We could use the same method that was applied in this study and compare it to these findings to create a more accurate picture of the general opinion of sexuality in men and women. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Social Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

4 star(s)

Design, implementation of the research and analysis are reasonably clear and detailed. Are there ethical considerations to be included? 4*

Marked by teacher Stephanie Duckworth 03/05/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Social Psychology essays

  1. A Replication of the Study by Murstein Investigating the Matching Hypothesis

    theorise that people are more likely to start a relationship with eachother if they are fairly closely matched in their ability to reward one another. As described above, physical attractiveness is one of the factors in what constitutes a reward in this context, and so this is generalised to the

  2. The matching hypothesis

    The photos used will be kept together (i.e. they will not be cut into separate male and female sections) for the simple reason that I am also asking the question; do the couples match each other? This would be impossible to do so if the photographs were separated.

  1. Outline and Evaluate Psychological Research into Minority Social Influence

    An argument against Moscovici's study is that the size of the majority must be taken into account. Clark and Maass (1990) found that when the majority of increased to 8 or 12 (from Moscovici's original 4), compared to the minority of 2, the levels of conformity were completely lost.

  2. Pro and Anti Social Behaviour

    Alternative theories Alternative social psychological theories of aggression have also been produced, challenging the idea that aggression is solely based upon imitation, modelling and reinforcement. Deindividuation theory One of these is the Deindividuation theory proposed by Zimbardo (1969). Deindividuation refers to the loss of a sense of personality identity that

  1. What Does Social Psychology Contribute to Our Understanding of Human Behaviour?

    People spend a lot of time thinking about others. We form impressions of people we meet, have described to us or see in the media. According to the Configural Model defined by Asch (1946, cited in Hogg, M. A., & Vaughan, G.

  2. Why Don't Bystanders Help? Diffusion of Responsibility or Social Norms?

    by either choosing not to notice the event, not interpreting the event as an emergency, or he is able to diffuse the responsibility onto others, in a group situation. Latane` and Darley's (1968) study on the effects of group size on helping behavior, suggests that group situations prohibit an onlooker from intervening or calling for assistance.

  1. It is often claimed that scientific results must be replicable. Is this possible or ...

    Furthermore, the more experiments are made the more accurate amplitude, how can results vary, can be made, however the scientists are not determined, because of the lack of time and widely spread competition feeling, to repeat their experiments lots of times and test it in various ways.

  2. Parkers participant observation describes The Boys everyday lives but what else does it do? ...

    is possible to see that in the many times throughout the study he did stop the boys from committing crimes and therefore affecting the study. Due to his involvement in the gang he did many a times change their behaviour, not due to his presence but because of his actions as part of the gang.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work