I rather like this photo of some German women professional footballers. It was taken as part of a Playboy spread. It reminds me of Sirens, and that scene in O Brother, Where Art Thou?
It is olde-worldy, and modern at the same time. I find it sexy. Maybe that’s just the wet t-shirts.
But women’s ‘sporno’ is presented, sold and critiqued so differently from men’s. The Times newspaper England printed a very moralising article about the Playboy shoot, suggesting the women were distracting from their duties as sportswomen by posing for ‘raunchy’ photos. The article made no mention of the endless stream of photos we see of men sports stars with their kit off. It is almost as if nobody wants to acknowledge that objectified men are …. sex objects. But women are assumed to be sex objects, even before they have taken their kit off or posed in front of a camera.
Also there is the obvious situation here whereby a group of young women are frolicking together in their wet-tshirts, indicating a familiar lesbian chic’ vibe. In men’s sporno, especially in this hyper-aware metrosexual age, men are rarely photographed other than on their own. This could be seen as a double-standard whereby women’s ‘bi-curiousness’ is presented as acceptable and even ‘hot’, whereas men’s is kept firmly in the closet.
As I have said before, feminists display some of these double standards as much as anyone else. On one hand organisations such as OBJECT are organising demos outside London’d new Playboy club, and fighting ‘sex object culture’. On the other hand, feminists ask why it is ok to feature men with naked torsos on magazines sold in newsagents, but not women?
There are so many ‘double standards’ in how we perceive objectified images of men and women (and those who identify as neither, or who confound gender expectations such as Andre Pejic), that it is more of a mosaic of confusion than a ‘double standard’.
But I am glad to see some sportswomen getting down and dirty with consumer culture. If it’s good enough for the boys, eh?
P.s. I haven’t mentioned him,but you know who’s the (metro)Daddy don’t you? He has written about most of these issues but only tends to show men’s sporno on his (GAY) blog! ;D