The Centerfold Syndrome: How Men Can Overcome Objectification and Achieve Intimacy with Women

Overview

In an era of rapidly changing gAnder relations, The Centerfold Syndrome gives a candid analysis of how boys are conditioned to both depAnd on and fear the power that females hold over them as gatekeepers to a precious commodity—the objectified female body. Most importantly, the study describes how this syndrome can prevent true emotional intimacy.Both men and women will appreciate the honesty and candor of The Centerfold Syndrome. It offers specific guidelines and a practical plan of action for all of us in our ...

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Overview

In an era of rapidly changing gAnder relations, The Centerfold Syndrome gives a candid analysis of how boys are conditioned to both depAnd on and fear the power that females hold over them as gatekeepers to a precious commodity—the objectified female body. Most importantly, the study describes how this syndrome can prevent true emotional intimacy.Both men and women will appreciate the honesty and candor of The Centerfold Syndrome. It offers specific guidelines and a practical plan of action for all of us in our various roles as friAnds, lovers, partners, husbands, wives, parents, and responsible citizens.

From a prominent psychologist and leader in the men's movement comes an exploration of the most malignant force in contemporary relationships--the male pattern of relating to women's bodies called "The Centerfold Syndrome."

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Brooks's (Texas A&M, psychology) supposition is that men have been given the Penthouse and Playboy centerfolds as a cultural idea of the perfect woman to seek out. Unfortunately, the icon does not usually live up to reality, and the discrepancy can prevent mature male/female interpersonal relations and intimacy. The centerfold syndrome, indoctrinated sometimes subtly, depersonalizes women, perpetuates anatomical falsities, and creates idealized and unreal fantasies about sex and sexuality; in short, it makes women objects of conquest, not people to interact with. The elements of this syndrome include (1) voyeurism (omnipresent images of naked and near-naked women), (2) objectification (women become objects to be observed), (3) need for validation through sexual conquest, (4) trophyism (women's bodies as trophies to be "collected"), and (5) fear of intimacy (insensitivity to emotional needs and issues). Brooks presents discussion in one of his men's groups as an example of the syndrome, goes on to debunk conventional wisdom, then provides some dozen modi operandi for overcoming it (to create harmony in one's sensual, sexual, social, spiritual, and emotional self). Appropriate and recommended for the men's self-help section of public libraries and psychology collections in community and senior college libraries.Scott Johnson, Meridian Community Coll. Lib., Miss.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787901042
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/15/1995
  • Series: Psychology Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 992,847
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

GARY R. BROOKS, Ph.D., is an associate professor in psychiatry and behavioral science with the Texas A&M University Health Sciences Center, adjunct faculty member at Baylor University, and instructor of men's studies with Texas Women's University. He is also the assistant chief of psychology service at the O. E. Teague Veteran's Center, Temple, Texas.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
1. What Is the Centerfold Syndrome?
2. The Men's Group
3. Debunking Conventional Wisdom
4. The True Causes of the Centerfold Syndrome
5. Men Who Made Progress
6. Men Who've Made Little Progress
7. Overcoming the Centerfold Syndrome

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2001

    Don't hold your breath

    The author strays far from his stated goal of helping men deal with our society's dehumanization of women. Instead, the book degenerates into an attempt to map out yet another disorder that psychiatrists may use to analyze and catagorize their patients. The realization that a 'centerfold syndrome' exists does not seem to help the author's own patients. For instance, one of his patients is a bank teller whose obsession with pornography and low self-esteem prevents him from actually forming any relationship with a woman. The author quite convincingly demonstrates that the 'centerfold syndrome' plays a role, but he cannot find a way to help the patient at all. The discerning reader might be tempted to believe that the book's real concern is to make some quaint contribution to the academic literature on the subject rather than resolving any issues.

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