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Tool porn

2009-05-04 13:11:19.032126+00 by Dan Lyke 6 comments

I had seen this somewhere else, but Chris pointed to this Guardian article on Susan Fiske of Princeton's findings with MRI brain scanning that men respond to pictures of scantily clad women and tools in similar ways:

Researchers used brain scans to show that when straight men looked at pictures of women in bikinis, areas of the brain that normally light up in anticipation of using tools, like spanners and screwdrivers, were activated.

So when the bluenoses try to block porn on the net, look out, that's just a step down the slippery slope towards banning Bridge City Tools.

[ related topics: Erotic Sexual Culture Fabrication Woodworking ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 16:19:07.556808+00 by: Diane Reese

This explains quite a lot, actually.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 16:25:29.328684+00 by: Dan Lyke

I'm just waiting to see what Topspin comes up with riffing on this. I've discarded all the obvious puns as too mundane...

#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 16:48:27.880335+00 by: dexev

I know you posted this in good fun, but I have a real problem with studies like this. I can't find a link to the actual study, but even from what was reported, the "analysis" is outrunning the results by a mile here -- it seems like the study is only an excuse for the researcher to vent her personal opinion, and the reporter is falling for it because the message ("Men are stupid jerks.") is socially acceptable.

It's a problem with all modern science, but particularly in psycology, and fMRI lends itself too well to the cause. In the current example -- men think about having sex when they look at pictures of women in bikinis (duh.) Thinking about having sex and thinking about using hand tools both activate the "taking action" part of the brain. But how do we get from there to "a recent Princeton study shows that men see women as sex objects"?

#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 18:30:22.235813+00 by: topspin

I'm just curious if the the brain scans of gay men looking at women in bikinis lit up the areas of anticipation of a body wax.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 22:41:06.532159+00 by: Dan Lyke [edit history]

Dexev, all good points.


#Comment Re: made: 2009-05-04 23:15:16.169214+00 by: Diane Reese

The alt-text on that xkcd is particularly good. ("Correlation doesn't imply causation, but it does waggle its eyebrows suggestively and gesture furtively while mouthing 'look over there'.")