Is modest hottest?


Since ancient times, women have been advised to cover up in order to protect their dignity. More recently, a so-called "modesty movement" has gotten underway, and Cristen and Caroline undress how the "modest is hottest" message ultimately strips agency from women and men alike.

Episode sources:

"Dress Code Discrimination: Different Figure, Different Rules?" by Kristen Houghton. Dec. 30, 2011. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kristen-houghton/dress-code-discrimination_b_1173582.html

"Enforcing School Dress Codes Teaches Girls to be Ashamed, Not 'Modest'" by Jessica Valenti. Alternet. May 21, 2014. http://www.alternet.org/education/enforcing-school-dress-codes-teaches-girls-be-ashamed-not-modest

"Female bodies as "distracting": Another quick thought on dress codes & sexism" by Jessica Valenti. Jessica Valenti.com. 2012. http://jessicavalenti.com/post/24900614123/female-bodies-as-distracting-another-quick-thought

"Fuck the Patriarchy" by Clare Haettinger. Wine & Marble. May 12, 2014. http://www.hannahettinger.com/guest-post-by-clare/

"Girls Gone Mild? A New Modesty Movement" by Jennie Yabroff. Newsweek. July 22, 2007. http://www.newsweek.com/girls-gone-mild-new-modesty-movement-104415

"Hemlines Down, Self-Esteem Up: The New Modesty Movement Continues" by Kristi York Wooten. Huffington Post. May 11, 2011. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kristi-york-wooten/modesty-movement-teen-fashion_b_860033.html

"Is there a Different Office Dress Code for Curvy Women?" The Root. June 10, 2010. http://www.theroot.com/articles/culture/2010/06/a_different_office_dress_code_for_curvy_women.html

"Modern Girls and the Modesty Movement." NPR. Aug. 23, 2007. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=13896381

"Sex, Lies, and Visual Stimulation: Debunking the Myths About Men" by Zawn Villines. Good Therapy. Feb. 17, 2013. http://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/sex-lies-men-myths-0217137

"The false modesty movement" by Anne K. Ream. Los Angeles Times. Aug. 21, 2007. http://articles.latimes.com/2007/aug/21/opinion/oe-ream21

"The Great Cover-Up" by Shia Tarrant. Bitch. 2007. http://bitchmagazine.org/article/the-great-cover-up

"University of Texas Nursing School Quickly Pulls Sign Warning Women Not to Show Cleavage" by Tyler Kingkade. Huffington Post. June 04, 2014. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/04/university-of-texas-clothing-distraction-nursing_n_5447039.html

"Yearbook That Photoshopped Girls' Clothing to Be More Modest Allowed Boys to Appear Shirtless" by Tara Culp-Ressler. ThinkProgress. June 05, 2014. http://thinkprogress.org/health/2014/06/05/3445412/yearbook-photoshop-shirtless-boys/

Academic insights:

"Habituation of male sexual arousal: effects of attentional focus" by E. Koukounas and R. Over. Biological Psychology. 2001. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11473795

"Let Modesty Be Her Rainment: The Classical Context of Ancient-Christian Veiling" by Tahmina Tariq. Implicit Religion. 2013. http://www.equinoxpub.com/journals/index.php/IR/article/view/20259

"Sex-Specific Content Preferences for Visual Sexual Stimuli" by Heather A. Rupp and Kim Wallen. Archives of Sexual Behavior. November 2007. http://www.indiana.edu/~sexlab/files/pubs/Rupp_Archives_VT_2008.pdf

Topics in this Podcast: sex, Beauty, sex differences, cleavage, modesty, rape culture, best of 2014 body image