Sydney: Women tend to post sexy selfies online more in environments with greater economic inequality, rather than where they might be oppressed because of their gender. The findings suggest that women take sexy selfies to compete with peers and climb the social ladder. “The argument is usually that when you see sexualisation, you see disempowerment,” said lead author Khandis Blake from University of New South Wales (UNSW) Sydney in Australia. “What we found instead is that women are more likely to invest time and effort into posting sexy selfies online in places where economic inequality is rising, and not in places where men hold more societal power and gender inequality is rife,” Blake added.
For the study, the team analyzed tens of thousands of social media posts across 113 countries. The researchers explained that income inequality increases competitiveness and status anxiety among people at all levels of the social hierarchy, making them sensitive to where they sit on the social ladder and wanting them to do better than others. “Rightly or wrongly, in today’s environment, looking sexy can generate large returns, economically, socially, and personally,” she added. (IANS)