Technologies of sexiness: theorizing women’s engagement in the sexualization of culture

Adrienne Evans, S. Riley, A. Shankar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

181 Citations (Scopus)
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-131
JournalFeminism and Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010

Bibliographical note

Please note Dr Evans was working at the University of Bath at the time this paper was published. Author's note: This work, first authored by Evans and published in Feminism and Psychology (Sage Publications, IF 0.582, Ranked 17 in Women's Studies), develops a conceptual framework for thinking about the relationship between identity and sexualized media and consumer culture, and makes suggestions for ways that other researchers can apply this framework. The paper has been cited as significant in developing a position ‘interested in the extent to which sexual “empowerment” has itself become a normatively demanded feature of young women’s sexual subjectivity’ (Gill 2012 p.2). It posed a challenge to researchers working in the field to develop accounts of how women are participating in sexualisation, and to show how women’s sense making takes place in relation to postfeminist notions of choice and autonomy. Since publication, the paper has consecutively been among the top-20 most read articles in Feminism and Psychology, and is currently receiving growing citations within the field (see, for example, the continuing debate in Sex Roles (Gavey 2011; Gill 2012; Peterson 2012)). The paper has led to requests from authors to review work that draws on the paper (Evans, forthcoming, book review of Ringrose 2012), invites to join and collaborate with others (see Attwood et al. 2011 and the AHRC Onscenity Research Network), and invitations to speak at significant events in the field (most noteworthy the ESRC Sexualisation Seminar Series, Kings College, University of London, and as Keynote Speaker at the forthcoming Gender and the Visual Image Conference). The paper was also the starting point for the research that will shortly be published in book form by Oxford University Press: Technologies of Sexiness: Sex, Identity and Consumer Culture.


  • agency
  • mediated subjectivities
  • sexualization of culture
  • technologies of the self

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