Author Audrey Brashich says Stanley Cup playoffs not too sexualized

An expert on the influence of pop culture and media on women’s body images is quite pleased about what she’s seeing in Vancouver during this year’s Stanley Cup competition.

While writer Audrey Brashich has observed that professional men’s sporting events often use provocative images of women to stimulate public interest, she noted that the NHL series generally has a clean, family-fun appeal.

“The Stanley Cup to me has become sort of another citywide pride,” Brashich told the Straight in a phone interview. “Everybody’s involved—the buses with the ”˜Go Canucks go’”¦boys and girls are wearing Canucks shirts. So it’s not”¦just a men’s event, the way some sporting events are.”

Despite one website that asks visitors to rate whether female fans of the Vancouver Canucks are “hotter” than those rooting for the competition, Brashich doesn’t see many indications of what she calls the sexualization of women.

“Sexualization in media imagery means like when someone’s value or attractiveness is really being assessed on how sexy they are and how good they look,” she said. “The downside of this is it really plays up appearance at the expense of any other accomplishments or attributes a young woman might have. Those things aren’t really looked up to. The bigger implication of it in our culture is that hotness or sexiness ends up being used as a measure of success for girls.”

The author of the 2006 book All Made Up: A Girl’s Guide to Seeing Through Celebrity Hype and Celebrating Real Beauty will speak next Thursday (June 16) at an event organized by YWCA Metro Vancouver, on the issue of sexualization of young girls and women in contemporary culture.

She will be joined on the panel by YWCA youth programs manager Alex Gist and communications expert Chris Staples. The June 16 forum runs from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the YWCA’s downtown Vancouver office (535 Hornby Street).




Jun 9, 2011 at 11:09am

Sexual appeal and looks is part (not all) but part of their value. I see nothing wrong with showing the beauty and form of men or woman to create attention or excitement about a sporting even.

7 2Rating: +5


Jun 10, 2011 at 6:16am

Can Audrey Brashich please explain Slutwalk for me and the fact that Feminists/Women's Rights Activists are supporting women dressing like 'Sluts' now?

There are sexualized imagery of men in the media all the time and this also results in men's body image insecurity as well as other implications for them. We just get one sided info all the time. Women are complicit in supporting these images by being in industries that support these type of images so I hope blame is not being put entirely on men.

Corporate greed is an equal opportunity exploiter.

6 3Rating: +3

monty/that's me

Jun 11, 2011 at 10:15am

" Stanley Cup playoffs not too sexualized"--what a ridiculous bunch of nonsense. A desperate attempt to publicize a talk. Focus, Carlito, please. This woman may have something important to say. But her comments about Stanley are just plain silly.

6 5Rating: +1

Taxpayers R Us

Jun 11, 2011 at 3:52pm

She may consider writing a book titled "All made up Part II - A girl's guide to seeing through Feminist BS and False Statistics" next, since it seems she may have benefited from it when she stopped modeling.

4 5Rating: -1