Men’s Magazine or Rapist?


Yuck. According to a new study, most people who are presented with descriptions of women from British “lad’s mags” and statements made about women from convicted rapists can’t tell which source the comments came from.

When presented with the statements, some of the study participants—men between the ages of 18 and 46—identified most with the quotes from convicted rapists. In a separate group of men and women between the ages of 19 and 30, researches asked participants to rank the comments based on how derogatory they were: men and women both ranked the magazine quotes as more derogatory. I’m glad this study was done, and quite honestly, the results didn’t surprise me. Have you flipped through those men’s magazines before? Scantily clad women, how to get in the pants of those scantily clad women, sports, and gadgets. Read more about the study participants and results here.

Here are a couple of quotes presented to the study participants. (See more quotes at Jezebel.)

Quote from rapist: Some girls walk around in short-shorts . . . showing their body off . . . It just starts a man thinking that if he gets something like that, what can he do with it?

Quote from lad’s mag: 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.

The study, forthcoming in the British Journal of Psychology, was conducted by psychologists from Middlesex University and the University of Surrey.



LaToya Jordan is a writer from Brooklyn, New York. She is the author of the poetry chapbook, Thick-Skinned Sugar (Finishing Line Press, 2015) and her work has been listed as notable in Best American Essays 2016. Her writing has appeared in Mobius: The Journal of Social Change, Mom Egg Review, Poets & Writers, The Rumpus, and more. Visit her at More from this author →