AirTalk for October 3, 2011

Got sex appeal? Use it to get ahead!

By Catherine Hakim

Catherine Hakim's new book challenges readers to use their sexual appeal in the work world.

If you really want to maximize your career, sociologist Catherine Hakim thinks you need to tap into your erotic side. In her new book, "Erotic Capital: The Power of Attraction in the Boardroom and the Bedroom," Hakim introduces the idea of a fourth dimension to the already recognized financial, cultural and social capitals as a tool for one’s personal and occupational advancement.

Erotic capital, she argues, is a conflation of an individual’s beauty, sex appeal, fitness and social skills. Obviously, erotic capital plays a role in coupling and marriage, but Hakim asserts that it can also be used to get ahead at work, in politics, sports and the arts.

While accessing the erotic might be viewed as negative, the author uses the book to dismiss such unsavory associations and underline the benefits to erotic exploitation. She argues that feminists have decreased the ability of women to bridge the gap between themselves and their male counterparts at work by failing to embrace this aspect of their lives. After all, she argues, women will always have a higher erotic capital than men, so they should start using it.

WEIGH IN:

Do you agree with Hakim’s argument? Is she empowering women, and men, to better their own lives? Or is she championing the basest of means for climbing the ladder? Are attractive people more successful in work and play than their less superficially gifted peers? Are you living up to your full erotic potential?

Guest:

Catherine Hakim, Author of "Erotic Capitol: The Power of Attraction in the Boardroom and in the Bedroom;" sociologist and professor at the London School of Economics


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