Author: Lacey Bonham

Who Says It Has to Be Modest? A Feminist Perspective on the Bikini

The following is a response to Jessica Rey’s speech regarding bikinis. Please watch the video here prior to reading: In her speech, Rey basically argues that when going to the beach/pool, women should wear one piece bathing suits because bikinis promote men to perceive women as objects. As evidence, Rey cites a Princeton study which found that when men viewed pictures of women in bikinis, the area of their brains associated with objects (e.g. screwdriver) lit up, as well as the areas of their brains associated with first-person action verbs (e.g. “I push” verses “she pushes”). Now, I want to make it clear that I do not disagree with the notion that men may be inclined to objectify women in certain environments (e.g. at the beach where women tend to wear less clothing in general). I do have a modest background in evolutionary psychology, and I understand that we all have instincts that may seem controversial in today’s society, but that we have little to no control over (and that we may not even be …