Men wearing panties with holes in their crotch have a “feminist agenda”, while women wearing dresses have a feminist agenda, a new study says.
“This study shows that a feminist view of the world has led men to wear what is, to a large extent, a form of sexual objectification,” said Dr. Jodie M. Bower, the study’s lead author and an associate professor at the University of California, San Diego.
“They also believe that women should dress in a manner that does not reveal their sexuality, which they have often argued is degrading and offensive.”
The researchers say their findings are consistent with a 2012 study that found women are more likely to feel ashamed for wearing short skirts, blouses and leggings.
The survey found a strong gender difference in how women respond to being asked questions about their sexuality.
“The findings of this study do not support the stereotype that the most socially conservative women dress in such a way that exposes their body to men,” said Bower.
“There are women who are very conservative in their dress, for example, in certain areas of their bodies.”
Bower said she and her colleagues had found that a significant portion of the men surveyed did not consider themselves feminists, but felt that they were still entitled to be treated like the other gender.
“These are men who have internalized the notion that their sexual orientation is not important to them, and so they are willing to dress in the ways that are acceptable to them,” Bower said.
The study included interviews with over 100 participants who self-identified as men or women, who also self-reported their sexual behavior and other characteristics.
Bowers and her team found that, on average, men wore underwear with holes, while women wore dresses with holes.
“A woman is expected to be a good and loyal partner,” said Mandy Pritchard, a doctoral candidate in sociology at the university who was not involved in the study.
“For a lot of people, this is the most uncomfortable part of their lives.
So, for men, it’s really difficult to see their sexualized body in a way where it is acceptable.”
Pritchard said it was not clear whether this was a direct result of the study or a result of men who self‑identified as feminists not respecting women.
“I think this could be part of the reason why men who do self-identify as feminists do not have the same reaction to women wearing underwear,” she said.
Bower and Pritard said the results could have implications for other sexualized behavior, including dressing in revealing clothing or dressing inappropriately in public.
“Our findings indicate that men who identify as feminists are also very likely to wear the most sexually provocative clothing in the workplace, which may lead to negative repercussions for other employees,” Prit, who was also not involved with the study, said.
“Men who identify with the feminist ideology do not seem to think that women are sexualized enough.”
Bowers said her study did not examine whether these attitudes have changed over time, but she believes it highlights the importance of understanding the ways in which we define sexualized gender.