Equal rights is an admirable goal that few would argue against. Yet, women still face many instances of unequal rights. For starters, they are paid less money on average than men, even for the same jobs.
Women also are often looked upon sexually by men. This isn't exactly a well kept secret.
But is there a relationship between experiencing the male gaze and how willing women are to support women's rights? A recent series of studies by Rachel Calogero (University of Kent psychologist) tested this very question.
In Study 1, American women completed a "self-objectification" scale that measures the extent to which a woman values her physical appearance relative to her competence. They then completed a measure assessing how much they support the way things currently are for women (the gender status quo), and lastly, were asked how willing they would be to do a variety of things to support women's rights (such as signing a petition, wearing a button, attending a march, etc).
The results showed that the more a woman self-objectified (valued her appearance over her competence), the more likely she was to NOT say she would be willing to do things to promote women's rights. And further, this was entirely due to these women believing more strongly that the way things are for women now are they way they should be.