A popular men’s magazine has sparked outrage after including Brittany Higgins in the annual Hot 100 women’s list while she was still in the high-profile rape trial that grips the nation.
Maxim Australia released the names on its ‘Hot 100’ Australia for 2022 on Wednesday, with the former Liberal staffer on June 12 – the same day the jurors began their fifth day of deliberation in the trial of her accused rapist, Bruce Lehrmann.
The ACT Supreme Court trial of Lehrmann, who has pleaded not guilty, was sensationally aborted Thursday — to begin again early next year — after a juror brought banned documents into the jury room.
Just hours before the highly publicized case came to a dramatic end, Maxim Australia’s 11th annual Hot 100 edition was rolled out for sale on the shelves of news agencies across the country.
The top 10 consists of winner Margot Robbie, followed by Sam Kerr, Ash Barty, Emma McKeon, Grace Tame, Sarah Snook, Ariarne Titmus, Duckie Thot, Delta Goodrem and Abbie Chatfield.
Maxim has defended Higgins’ inclusion in the list, insisting she is a worthy candidate.
Brittany Higgins arrives to testify before an ACT Supreme Court jury on the third day of the trial of her alleged rapist, Bruce Lehrmann on Oct. 6
While Maxim claims Ms. Higgins was included because she was influential, critics say you don’t make the list unless you’re attractive.
Advocate for gender equality Professor Catharine Lumby, Chair of Media and Communications at the University of Sydney, described Ms Higgins’ inclusion as ‘offensive’.
Maxim’s new Hot 100 Australia edition (pictured) has come under fire after she included Brittany Higgins in the middle of her rape case
Professor Lumby said that while the basis of Ms Higgins’ inclusion on the list is “ambiguous” in that she could be considered the “most influential people,” the list appears to be objectifying as it mainly features conventionally attractive women.
‘To me, [Ms Higgins inclusion] is offensive because that list should be read as a list of who is hot and attractive,” she said.
“If it was a list of 100 people who influenced Australia, I wouldn’t have a problem with it.
Professor Lumby called for the publication to be more aware in the future of who they select and the implications of objectifying women.
“A magazine like Maxim should be much more careful about who they put on such a list,” she said.
Melinda Tankard Reist, director of the Collective Shout movement that fights against the objectification and sexualization of women, said Maxim’s insistence that the list targeted “influential” women was “spider.”
“If that’s Maxim’s true intent, why persist in the ‘Hot 100’ descriptor that expresses ‘sexy’ rather than ‘brilliant spirit,'” she said.
“The last issue I saw featured some ‘learn’ women from Ultra-Tune – the entire company is notorious for portraying women as dumb bimbos – barely ‘influential’ and ‘newsworthy.'”
Professor Catharine Lumby (pictured) said Ms Higgins’ inclusion on the list is ‘ambiguous’ but offensive given its connotation is a compilation of ‘attractive’ women
Ms Tankard Reist said the annual list was an insult to women and that “Maxim benefits from objectifying women for male sexual satisfaction and pleasure.”
“Women don’t need the cries of crappy serial sexist magazines like Maxim,” she said.
“Involving Higgins – no less in the middle of her rape case – is an insult to her and all women. Not a compliment. It’s humiliating and humiliating and downplays their achievements.’
But when asked about the pick, Maxim Editor-in-Chief Santi Pintado claimed that Higgins was a prime candidate to be included in this year’s lineup.
“Our 2022 HOT 100 list continues to celebrate the outstanding women who have influenced, impressed or influenced us this year with their aptitude, intellect, humor, headlines, brutality and overall mega talents,” he said.
Brittany has certainly influenced and influenced many Australians while also being very newsworthy. Hence her place on the list.’
Mr. Pintado noted that Ms. Higgins was also on the Hot 100 list last year.
The jury entered its fifth day of deliberation on Wednesday — the day the list was released. The magazine was put up for sale the next day when the jurors were fired in Lehrmann’s trial. Pictured: Ms Higgins arrives at court on October 7
Lehrmann is charged with raping Ms Higgins in the parliament building on a night out in March 2019. He pleaded not guilty to one count of having sexual intercourse without consent.
Chief Justice Lucy McCallum fired the 12 jurors in Lerhmann’s trial after an academic research paper on sexual assault was found in the jury room.
The new trial is likely to begin in February next year.
Maxim is an international magazine that launched in the UK in 1995 before expanding to many other countries including the US, Australia, Canada and Germany.
The publication’s hot 100 began in the US edition in 2000, before being adapted in Australian print 11 years later.
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