• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"To what extent do representations in the printed media influence gender roles?"

Extracts from this document...


"To what extent do representations in the printed media influence gender roles?" I will be looking at women's 'to-be-looked-at-ness', and examining the representations of women as objects of the male gaze and male desires. In simple terms, a stereotype is the application of one (usually negative) characteristic to a whole group. The stereotype is an easy concept to understand, but there are some points you need to consider when looking at media representations with regard to stereotyping. For a stereotype to 'work' it needs to be recognisable to the audience and when so recognised, then judgements are made about the subject. If the stereotype is negative, then the judgements will also tend to be the same. The predictable thing about stereotypes is that they are predictable! They create a sense of order and also provide a sense of identity (even if it is a negative one!) Stereotypical judgements and stereotypical media representations can (and often do) lead to different treatments of groups by other groups, (sadly, often quite discriminatory). If we define 'male' and 'female' all we are doing is a biological classification, but if we think about the terms 'masculine' and 'feminine' we have to think about certain roles and lifestyles. Put simply, the words have very specific ideological assumptions of what is 'natural behaviour' for each sex. ...read more.


This portrays them as the good little housewife that stays at home and runs the house and childcare. Also women are used to advertise diet regimes, which suggest that all women must be slim, and watch what they eat in order to be accepted and liked. This puts a great strain on women to look good, but not for themselves - for the males. My view is that it is magazines that make young women feel pressured into looking 'perfect', usually for men. Anorexia and eating disorders are said to be the result of these adverts in the media but would the role be reversed if it were males that advertised the diet products? Would men even agree to be pictured to advertise such things? Would men sell the products? It's my feeling that they would not sell and feel that men would not like to hinder their macho masculine image. With women being used to advertise cleaning products, diet pills, does this say that we must fulfil this role in society or does it solely help sell the product, as they look good to the eye? Open sexism is still a reality as the procedures against sexist and discriminatory advertising are very slow and the fines are not dissuasive. ...read more.


Caressing & kissing the male body then smiling falsely. I think advertisers are now beginning to pick up on changes of gender roles in society. The 'traditional' roles of men and women are disappearing. Women are becoming more powerful. They are getting the well-paid jobs, earning a lot of money, and attaining positions of power. Due to this, the numbers of men staying at home while the women are going out to work is increasing. The traditional roles are being reversed. Advertisers are using role reversal more and more in adverts to highlight these changes. These reversals are, however, often portrayed in a sarcastic or less serious than in other adverts. Without these gender roles maybe society would have had an adverse effect on the media and what we portray as acceptable would in fact be outrageous. Why is the media so important? -One may ask. More often than not, it's the way we get most of our information. Information we tend to think of as the "truth. Overall when looking at different types of media I got the general impression that women are portrayed in a worthless provocative manor. This was repeated in the same way across the whole range and always looked as if they were being exploited. Society have dictated to the media what they want to buy and see, all that's left for the media to do is provide this product. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Media section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Media essays

  1. Free essay

    Assess the role of the media

    3 star(s)

    the power of the media can easily be corrupt and used to enforce inequality, control the masses and benefit the already-powerful elites. In conclusion, there are many different ideas on what roles the media performs in our society: the Marxist and Elite theories both revolve around the same basic principals of class inequality and corruption of the higher classes.

  2. "Any sociological explanation of the influence of the mass media needs to take into ...

    There are also different 'discourses' (knowledge, prejudices, resistances, etc.) which is determined by social position. Also, the meaning of text is socially constructed according to discourse & social situation. Perhaps Mass-Culture may affect the ways in which we construct opinions based on our cultural viewpoints. Our cultural influence may dictate how the texts should be read.

  1. To what extent do media representations of refugees and asylum seekers limit their integration ...

    The only reality we know is that which media messages convey to us. Kaye (1998) identifies two important concepts formulated in this fourth stage; agenda-setting and news-framing. Agenda-setting refers to the specific effects of the media in determining which issues are seen as priorities for policy development and political action.

  2. How does the media represent female bodies?

    By 1996 McRobbie had noticed a more varied approach in magazines such as More, to women's roles with more emphasis on equality in relationships, an encouragement for women readers to satisfy their sexual and social needs and sex being handled in a humorous way.

  1. Moral Panic and media folk devils.

    Music from heavy metal bands also has claims of Satanist rituals in the lyrics, Black Sabbath was repeatedly accused of Satanist concerts in America and seemed to incriminate themselves when Ozzy Osbourne bit off a bats head on stage (although it was accidental).

  2. How is Crime represented in the Media

    This represents no change from the level of crime based on interviews in 2004/05 * There were 5.6 million crimes recorded by the police in 2005/06, a fall of one per cent compared with 2004/05 * The 2005/06 BCS showed the risk of being a victim of crime at 23

  1. To what extent does the Media affect body image in teens and their perception ...

    Karl Langerfield, Head Designer of the Fashion house Chanel[25], said that: ?the world of fashion was all to do ?with dreams and illusions, and no one wants to see round women'.?[26] After reading both these studies, I decided to create an experiment that was heavily influenced by the experiments that the University of Sussex had conducted on self-discrepancy.

  2. Media and The Sexualization of Young Girls

    The days of hoping to be like women who lay on their backs to achieve fame and fortune needs to end. Celebrities don?t need to be the only role models, it?s time for the mothers, teachers, and big sisters to step up to the plate.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work