Sexism in the Media

2977 WordsDec 17, 201012 Pages
sexism in the media Karen Harper, Oakland LMV What comprises sexism and feminism? Do sexist images in the media have an impact on women and girls? And, what are the broader political issues here? I am hoping that we can reframe the debate around sexism and nudity in the media in a way that makes sense for socialists. We’re all probably aware of sexist representations in the media from newspapers and magazines to the movies, TV and radio. For example, Rolling Stone magazine didn’t used to be a soft porn magazine, but it is so common now for female musicians to be in soft-porn poses on its cover. Howard Stern, the radio DJ, is always asking his female guests and callers what they are wearing. Stern focuses heavily on women’s physical…show more content…
As one student told the BBC’s Inside Out program: “I work when I want to. I make the amount of money I want to, and if I don’t feel like it I can quit. No-one is pushing me to do it.” “But contrast this with the comment of a regular frequenter of lap dancing clubs: “It makes me feel like a king to be sitting there with all these women surrounding me, giving me loads of attention. Nothing beats the thrill of calling a woman over, sitting her down and talking to her, knowing that if you give her money she is going to take all her clothes off. It’s great to have that kind of control, that power, and it’s an ego boost to have all girls competing with each other to dance for you.” “However empowered individual dancers might feel (and of course not all dancers are well paid) lap dancing itself promotes the idea that women are not thinking ‘whole’ beings but body parts – objects available for men to control and enjoy.” 1 This new ‘feminism’ also represents a shift from a collective to an individualistic approach to women’s equality. If a given woman feels oppressed, feels exploited, or feels demeaned, it is because something is wrong with her. Perhaps she is not aggressive enough or not motivated enough. She has not figured out how to advance within the current system. When women buy into the basic concepts of capitalist culture, the
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