Analysis Of Sandra Lee Bartky 's ' On Psychological Oppression '

1209 Words Sep 29th, 2015 null Page
Sandra Lee Bartky published “On Psychological Oppression,” in which she describes virtually any and all aspects of psychological oppression. She most poignantly described female psychological oppression in the passage "consider now a second example...ritual of subjugation" (Bartky 29). This passage highlights sexual objectification and the idea that women “must be made to know,” that they “must be made to see [themselves] as [others] see [them]” (29). This is incredibly important because when one is made to know, they are forced into altered perceptions of themselves; they can no longer see themselves the way they want to, but rather the way the perpetrators do. By doing so, Bartky illustrates how society’s fragmentation and sexual objectification implements lasting internalized oppression. This marks the significant involvement that society has on someone’s own impressions and perceptions of themselves, specifically women.
Bartky is sexually objectified (and fragmented) when the men catcalling her made her know that she is as little to them as a “nice [piece] of ass” (Bartky 29). Sexual objectification occurs when people treat others as instruments for sexual pleasure and nothing else. She quite literally states that she “[had] been made into an object” (29). While she didn’t make herself into that object, she couldn’t fight against it. She was immobile and mute, forced to think of herself in such a way that aspects of her body were the sole purpose of her. That she was…

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