Miss Representation

“Miss Representation” brought several intriguing points to my attention. Specifically, I concurred with the film’s claim that when women who are in positions of power are represented in the media, they are twice as likely to be described emotionally compared to men. For example, Miss Representation used the example of a news article about two politicians, one a woman and the other a man. When they described the woman politician’s statements they used negative words to describe what she had said about the given issue such as “complained,” while they used only words such as “stated” and “explained” for the man politician. I found the truth behind this claim extremely disconcerting, as even a news article, which is supposed to be a reliable source in today’s media, portrays women professionals in an unflattering light. Moreover, I believe it is the discrete manner in which they negatively represent women to be an even greater concern, as many people would not have noticed the issue with this news article and would have accepted this article without realizing why it should be criticized and rejected. In addition, I found the claim that the reason television programs contain an alarming amount of misogynistic, gender stereotypical content is due to the fact that they are trying to entice men between the ages of eighteen and thirty-four to watch television. The film continues to explain how women within this same age group are already watching television, but it is the men who apparently need more of an incentive to do so. I find it troubling that television companies have failed to use an once of creativity in the ways to lure in men to their programs as there are far too many programs that contain flawless scantily clad femme fatales that are one-dimensional characters. I believe that these male-dominated television companies should make more of an effort to create programs that are enjoyable for all viewers and yet do not insult and degrade women. This task is certainly achievable and I believe that with a little effort and brainpower, these television companies can work towards a media that has a more positive representation of all people in today’s society.

After we watched the film, I found Litty Paxton’s criticism of the production to be particularly interesting. She worried that the fact that the movie was book-ended by the director’s birth of her daughter may leave the wrong impression for the viewers. Paxton went on to explain that the director should have had the same inspiration to create this film if she found out she was having a boy, instead of a girl. I completely agree with Paxton’s concern, as not only should women be educated about the misrepresentations in the media but also it is essential that men are aware of this issue as well. Thus, I ask to my fellow bloggers-How can we make everyone in our community more cognizant of the negative impact that the mass media has on our wellbeing?

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