May 25, 2012 09:50 AM EDT
Cambridge University Students' 'Rear of the Year' Contest Stirs Up Scandal
A Cambridge University student newspaper has been accused of portraying women as "sex objects" for hosting a contest that encourages female students to pose wearing just their underwear throughout campus.
The competition, "Rear of the Year," is arousing controversy because it features photos of scantily-clad women in lingerie showing off their posteriors, reports the Telegraph.
Like Us on Facebook
The Tab, which is published online, asked readers to vote for their favorite derrière.
Women's rights groups are outraged, touting that the university's female students are being portrayed as "sex objects" rather than as bright minds.
Editors at the Tab have defended the contest against charges of sexism by pointing out that the paper holds a similar competition for men.
Ruth Graham, an officer of the Cambridge University Student Union told the Telegraph that "The Tab's supposed nod at equality of objectification, by producing a men's 'rear of the year' story, is evidently superficial, given that whilst the women are featured wearing lingerie, the men are featured urinating and cooking."
Similarly, school administrators are not amused. "We can't stop what they're doing but it would be fair to say we don't approve of it," a university source told the Daily Mail. "It is not the kind of image we would want to project."
The contest has received a mixed reaction on publication's own website, with some readers discussing how they would like to "smash" the girls and another saying simply: "Urgh."
The pictures are taken from behind, obviously, and do not identify the girls, who use only a first name alias to enter the competition.