Poetics: Journal of Empirical Research on Literature, the Media and the Arts vol:45 pages:19-35
A three-wave panel study of adolescent boys and girls (N = 1,041) tested an integrative model to explore whether the multidimensional process of self-objectification acts as an explanatory mechanism for the well-documented influence of sexual television messages on adolescents’ acceptance of gendered sexual roles. A structural equation model showed that viewing sexualizing sitcoms (time 1) predicted the internalization of appearance ideals and valuing appearance over competence (time 2). In turn, the internalization of appearance ideals positively predicted body surveillance and valuing appearance over competence (all time 2). Valuing appearance over competence also predicted body surveillance (all time 2). Finally, the internalization of appearance ideals (time 2) positively predicted acceptance of gendered sexual roles (time 3). The discussion focuses on the implications of these findings to explain the relationships among sexualizing media, self-objectification and the developing sexuality and body image of adolescents.