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Assessing neural responses towards objectified human targets and objects to identify processes of sexual objectification that go beyond the metaphor

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Abstract
Objectification - reducing a someone to a something - represents a powerful and potentially damaging way in which we can see and treat others. Women are often victims of processes of objectification that occur whenever a woman is reduced to her body or certain body parts. What remains unclear is the extent to which a woman becomes an object when objectified. Using the oddball paradigm in three experiments, participants' neural activity was measured while they analyzed frequently presented male and female human stimuli and infrequently presented gender-matched doll-like objects. The infrequent doll-like objects were expected to trigger a late event-related neurophysiological response (P300) the more they were perceived different from the repeated, human stimuli (i.e., the oddball effect). In Experiment 1, the oddball effect was significantly smaller for objectified women compared to objectified men. Results of Experiment 2 confirmed that this effect was confined to objectified depictions of women. In Experiment 3, no semantic references to the human-object divide were provided, but objectified women were still perceived more similar to real objects. Taken together, these results are the first to demonstrate that the perception of women, when objectified, changes in essence beyond the metaphor.
Keywords
SELF-OBJECTIFICATION, BODY, WOMEN, GENDER, LIKELIHOOD, ATTENTION, COMPONENT, BRAIN

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MLA
Vaes, Jeroen, et al. “Assessing Neural Responses towards Objectified Human Targets and Objects to Identify Processes of Sexual Objectification That Go beyond the Metaphor.” SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, vol. 9, 2019.
APA
Vaes, J., Cristoforetti, G., Ruzzante, D., Cogoni, C., & Mazza, V. (2019). Assessing neural responses towards objectified human targets and objects to identify processes of sexual objectification that go beyond the metaphor. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 9.
Chicago author-date
Vaes, Jeroen, Giulia Cristoforetti, Daniela Ruzzante, Carlotta Cogoni, and Veronica Mazza. 2019. “Assessing Neural Responses towards Objectified Human Targets and Objects to Identify Processes of Sexual Objectification That Go beyond the Metaphor.” SCIENTIFIC REPORTS 9.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Vaes, Jeroen, Giulia Cristoforetti, Daniela Ruzzante, Carlotta Cogoni, and Veronica Mazza. 2019. “Assessing Neural Responses towards Objectified Human Targets and Objects to Identify Processes of Sexual Objectification That Go beyond the Metaphor.” SCIENTIFIC REPORTS 9.
Vancouver
1.
Vaes J, Cristoforetti G, Ruzzante D, Cogoni C, Mazza V. Assessing neural responses towards objectified human targets and objects to identify processes of sexual objectification that go beyond the metaphor. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS. 2019;9.
IEEE
[1]
J. Vaes, G. Cristoforetti, D. Ruzzante, C. Cogoni, and V. Mazza, “Assessing neural responses towards objectified human targets and objects to identify processes of sexual objectification that go beyond the metaphor,” SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, vol. 9, 2019.
@article{8652452,
  abstract     = {Objectification - reducing a someone to a something - represents a powerful and potentially damaging way in which we can see and treat others. Women are often victims of processes of objectification that occur whenever a woman is reduced to her body or certain body parts. What remains unclear is the extent to which a woman becomes an object when objectified. Using the oddball paradigm in three experiments, participants' neural activity was measured while they analyzed frequently presented male and female human stimuli and infrequently presented gender-matched doll-like objects. The infrequent doll-like objects were expected to trigger a late event-related neurophysiological response (P300) the more they were perceived different from the repeated, human stimuli (i.e., the oddball effect). In Experiment 1, the oddball effect was significantly smaller for objectified women compared to objectified men. Results of Experiment 2 confirmed that this effect was confined to objectified depictions of women. In Experiment 3, no semantic references to the human-object divide were provided, but objectified women were still perceived more similar to real objects. Taken together, these results are the first to demonstrate that the perception of women, when objectified, changes in essence beyond the metaphor.},
  articleno    = {6699},
  author       = {Vaes, Jeroen and Cristoforetti, Giulia and Ruzzante, Daniela and Cogoni, Carlotta and Mazza, Veronica},
  issn         = {2045-2322},
  journal      = {SCIENTIFIC REPORTS},
  keywords     = {SELF-OBJECTIFICATION,BODY,WOMEN,GENDER,LIKELIHOOD,ATTENTION,COMPONENT,BRAIN},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {10},
  title        = {Assessing neural responses towards objectified human targets and objects to identify processes of sexual objectification that go beyond the metaphor},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-42928-x},
  volume       = {9},
  year         = {2019},
}

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