Essay On Sexploitation

1341 Words6 Pages
There has been a surge of female involvement in sport in recent decades. In the past, sport was viewed as a primarily male or masculine pastime; however, it has evolved into an equitable “universally shared human culture” (JCRWS, 2017). Despite the positive popularity in women’s sport, there has also been an increase in the exploitation of women’s bodies in media coverage, namely ‘Sexploitation’. Sexploitation in context with athletics and sports is defined as types of marketing, promotion, or any attempt to gain media coverage which highlights the sexual attributes of an athlete, especially through the visibility of their bodies (The Communique, 2017). Sexploitation has been a continuous topic of debate in the sport of Beach
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This creates an ironic situation for elite athletes. As put by Janine Ilitch, member of the Australian netball team: “I think for female sports to be taken seriously, we should be recognised for our skills and achievements rather than our naked bodies” (Ilitch, 2016). Beach volleyball, as a sport, should create a supportive environment for its players. Not one of female/gender/sexual discrimination where players feel as though they must conform to the exploitation of their bodies just to be successful in their field of choice.

Though it may appear that the Sexploitation of women within Beach Volleyball has led to positive outcomes and increased publicity for the sport, there are many possible negative outcomes for the Stakeholders of the issue. “[Sexploitation] has several flaws: it excludes many female athletes who do not fit into the appropriate body types, it glorifies certain female shapes and sends messages about what is appropriate and inappropriate for aspiring female athletes. These images fit neatly into stereotypes that have historically prevented women’s sport from being accepted on par with men’s sport” (Phillips, 2016). The acceptance of Sexploitation within Beach Volleyball, which is advertised on mainstream media, could become a barrier towards participation for a range of individuals and could even lead to health risks.
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