Dr Miranda Horvath and Dr Peter Hegarty, psychologists from Middlesex University and the University of Surrey found that small groups of men and women had difficulty distinguishing the sources of quotes about women between British lad magazines and statements made by convicted rapists.
Findings from the two studies -- one coed and the other men only-- will be published in the British Journal of Psychology. According to the University of Surrey website, men actually rated the quotes from lads' mags as being more derogatory than those by convicted rapists.
Miranda Horvath, is concerned that lads’ magazine editors are not working hard enough to moderate the content of their magazines: "A lot of debate around the regulation of lads’ mags has been to do with how they affect children but less has been said about the influence they have on their intended audience of young men and the women with whom those men socialise."
"Go and smash her on a park bench." is a quote from one of the magazines studied: FHM, Loaded, Nuts and Zoo. The rapists quotes were taken from 'The Rapist Files: Interviews With Convicted Rapists by Sussman & Bordwell".
This verbiage is also from one of the magazines: 'A girl may like anal sex because it makes her feel incredibly naughty and she likes feeling like a dirty slut. If this is the case, you can try all sorts of humiliating acts to help live out her filthy fantasy.' By contrast, here is a convicted rapist discussing his crime: 'There's a certain way you can tell that a girl wants to have sex . . . They way they dress, they flaunt themselves.'
Dr Peter Hegarty, of the University of Surrey’s Psychology Department, added: “There is a fundamental concern that the content of such magazines normalises the treatment of women as sexual objects. We are not killjoys or prudes who think that there should be no sexual information and media for young people. But are teenage boys and young men best prepared for fulfilling love and sex when they normalise views about women that are disturbingly close to those mirrored in the language of sexual offenders?”
In both studies, one asking a coed group to rank the comments in terms of derogatory nature and the other by self-identification, the lad mags were scored worse than the statements of rapists.
Ironically, convicted sex offenders undergo programs in England that challenge the men about their sexist, misogynistic and derogatory beliefs about women, seeking to reducate them. Simultaneously, the magazines are upping the volume in creating major misconceptions around female sexuality. Tip via Jezebel.