Sexual objectification: The common thread connecting myriad forms of sexual violence against women

Am J Orthopsychiatry. 2017;87(3):226-232. doi: 10.1037/ort0000257.


In this article, the authors focus on the linkages between objectification and current societal manifestations of sexual violence toward women to make the case that everyday instances of objectification can provide the foundation for more extreme forms of violence. First, they formally introduce the notion of objectification and explain its origins and its consequences in those who perpetrate and those who experience it. Next, they use objectification as a lens through which to consider several related, but distinct, societal problems, including: sexual assault of college women, harassment of women in work settings, and sex trafficking of women in the United States and around the world. Finally, they offer potential solutions, which, if implemented at individual, organizational, and societal levels, could reduce violence against women in its many forms. (PsycINFO Database Record

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Sex Offenses / prevention & control*
  • Sexual Harassment / prevention & control*
  • Social Norms*
  • Social Perception