In addition, other effects f the media on women and women’s role in the media industry will also be examined. When it comes to body image, media has a great impact in influencing how women think they need to look to be appealing in our society. Women can’t help being exposed daily to the thin ideal bodies from models though advertisements; Internet, commercials, and TV show. Even though models’ body size is declining, “women’s average weight has increased during the last 40 years, with recent health statistics showing that well over half are overweight in the U.
S” (Dimmitt et al. , 2009). There is an obvious discrepancy as to the image of women in media to eel women in our country. These commercials and advertisements are only representing the bodies of a small percentage of women instead of depicting what the majority of women really look like. According to Dimmitt, Hallowed, & Stilling, “the typical model now is often as much as 20% underweight”. Even though this is not a common weight in regular women, the repeated exposure to this leads them to believe that being underweight is normal.
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This unhealthy ideal in some cases causes women to be pressured to loose weight and feel dissatisfied with their own body image. According to Has, Fallow, Petitions, and Grist, ” Women may directly del unhealthy eating habits presented in the media, such as fasting or purging, because the media-portrayed thin ideal body type is related to eating pathology. ” These are horrible consequences that can impact a women’s life. Eating disorders not only affect the physical body of a person but can also have damages to a person’s mind and self-esteem.
In different types of Media, gender roles are also reinforced and in most cases are defined along the lines of sexuality. In relation to media and sexuality Shall says, “The image system thus distorts our perceptions and offers little that balances out the stress on sexuality. Sexuality is present in all forms of media. Women in commercials, advertisements, and especially in music videos are portrayed as being sexual objects by the way in which they dress, dance and act.
According to Collins, “Social learning and other theories of media use suggest that these kinds of portrayals may also affect viewers’ sexual attitudes and behavior, particularly during adolescence when youth are actively coming to terms with their identities (gender and otherwise) and their sexuality. ” The exposure of media in advertising and commercials can have a great impact on what women and young girl in particular eel they need to act. The media is indirectly adding to the social pressure that teenagers might have regarding their bodies and sexuality.
At that young age, it can be difficult to not be influenced by the exposure of sexuality in the media. Another way, in which the media defines gender roles, is by reinforcing the stereotypes of how women should act in relationship to men. Men are usually portrayed as being dominant, independent, strong, and brave. On the other hand women’s attitudes are characterized as being submissive, weak, and dependent to men. This has been something that has been exposed to society for a while. Even in children’s movies such as sleeping beauty or snowshoe the woman’s survival is always dependent on the prince saving her.
In her article Wood says, “Analyses of MET revealed that it portrays females as passive and waiting for men’s attention, while males are shown ignoring, exploiting or directing women. ” This is particularly true in music videos, where women are Just seen as the background to many male singers or rappers. In addition, men and women in the media are depicted in traditional roles where the man is the one who goes out to work to support the family and the woman days at home cleaning the house and taking care of the kids.
Although that is not necessarily portraying women negatively, it affects our society in the way that it establishes norms of what a woman’s role consists of. Magazine articles in particular encourage gender roles in the way that they feature many “tips” on how to “please a man”. Many of these articles include suggestions of how to loose weight to be more appealing for a man, how to cook better for “him”, and how to please “him” sexually. Society is continuously exposed to the idea that women should work hard in order to please and obtain attention from men.
The big question is, if women don’t like to be objectified and unrealistically presented, why do women in the media industry allow this to happen? The answer is that there is a lack of women in leadership position within the media industry. ” One Nebular study puts the figure of 10% of all executive positions, and only 3% of top leadership posts. “(World Saw Monitor) This figure only proves the gender imbalance in this industry. Women are lacking power to impact our culture trough this important source of communication. In his article Wood says, “Female film directors are even more scarce, as are executives in charge f MET.
It is probably not coincidental that so few women are behind the scenes of an industry that so consistently portrays women negatively. ” MET is a television channel that is mostly run by men, consequently many of its programs such as “Sixteen and Pregnant” hurt women’s image. It is as if women had no voice on how the general public views them through the media. According to Ruby, ” 98% of female journalist felt they faced obstacle that their male colleagues didn’t, such as discrimination in receiving career-enhancing assignments, and discrimination in promotion.
Women are still having challenges obtaining the same treatment men receive in the industry. It is still a male dominant industry, which is reflected in the advertisements, and commercials that highlight stereotypical gender roles. Even though the media is being used to spread the message and image of the objectifying of women it can also be used as a tool to do the exact opposite. Social media is an emerging technology that can be a powerful tool to spread awareness of this issue.
Today millions of people all over the world have Faceable and twitter accounts. It includes famous people, businessmen, activist, and regular people. The haring of a link or a picture from one person has the capacity to reach an incredible audience. In can have a powerful force in making people re-think how women are portrayed in media. By making campaigns and promoting them thorough social media urging for a more equal representation and realistic image of women in advertisements and commercials there can be a greater impact to change this issue.
There could be documentary done to show how the unrealistic images of women in media affect young women and often lead them to have eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia. In this videos women who have been victims of the effect that Edie have had on their self-perception can talk about their experiences in order to help other young women not to fall into the same problem. This documentary can be advertised though faceable and twitter. The commercials and advertisements with thin models are successful only because people see them as something normal.
The fastest way to make people educated and wanting get involved is by spreading the word on its effect on society through social media. Through seeing all these types of campaigns and advertisements, women will learn that it is okay to stop trying to get an unobtainable body figure. Women that feel like they have been pressured by society to look a certain way will be able to not feel alone anymore and see that there are other women who feel the same way. Lastly, people in high positions in the media can become more aware that the way that they are depicting women in their advertisements is not healthy to society.
Unfortunately, the portrayal of women in media has had somewhat of a negative impact in our society. With it, it was brought and reinforced typical stereotypes that hurt women’s image. But it not only affects their image but also has an impact on their self-esteem that can in some cases lead o depression and eating disorders. Women’s self-esteem can also be impacted by the way they are being objectified and socialized in many of the different music videos and commercials.