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peeaitchdee.com

In fairness nobody can tell you how you’re going to feel when you start a PhD. Clearly there are common, shared emotional responses that are pretty predictable: Fear, excitement and nervousness being the ones that immediately spring to mind.

What they don’t tend to talk about is paranoia.

Paranoia that you’re not smart enough to be doing this. Paranoia that somehow ‘they’ are going to spot this. Paranoia that you are going to get found out.

4 days into my PhD and that’s basically where I am. (Actually I’ve been at that stage since the first week of my Undergraduate degree, but that says more about my perilous mental state than anything else!) Fortunately this wasn’t an unpredicted state of affairs and I’d been fortunate enough to have several discussions about this issue with a good friend – who was also scheduled to be one of my academic supervisors before…

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Sexual Objectification, Part 1: What is it?

Dr. Caroline

This is the first part in a series about how girls and women can navigate a culture that treats them like sex objects.

Around since the 1970s and associated with curmudgeonly second-wave feminists, the phrase “sexual objectification” can inspire eye-rolling. The phenomenon, however, is more rampant than ever in popular culture, and we now know that it causes real harm.

What is sexual objectification?  If objectification is the process of representing or treating a person like an object, then sexual objectification is the process of representing or treating a person like a sex object, one that serves another’s sexual pleasure.

How do we know sexual objectification when we see it?  Building on the work of Nussbaum and Langton, I’ve devised the Sex Object Test (SOT) to measure the presence of sexual objectification in images.  I proprose that sexual objectification is present if the answer to any of the following seven questions is “yes”:

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Does Media Matter: Media and Perception of Reality

Dr. Jennifer W. Shewmaker

Have you ever noticed that when you watch the news a lot, which is filled with reports of crime and violence, you suddenly become very paranoid, convinced that you would soon be the victim of a violent crime? Turns out, there’s a good explanation for that. George Gerbner developed the Cultivation Theory, which states  “Television makes specific and measurable contributions to viewers’ conceptions of reality” (Gerbner et al., 1980, p. 10).  For more than 30 years, Gerbner led a research group studying the effects of television viewing on the viewer’s perception of reality. He asked questions about what kind of content was on television and the consequences of living with and learning from television. He wanted to understand how television viewing impacted people’s perception of reality.

Gerbner believed that how much television a person watched every day influenced how much their perception of reality was tied to television content. For…

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