Thursday, March 29, 2007
"Sexism in film takes form in all shapes and sizes including violence, humorous, blatant, or subtle. Women are often seen as childlike, dependent, housewives, or as simpleminded sex objects" (Wubet).
Here are a few examples of major motion pictures where women are exploited in one way or another. In "Grease", Sandy changes her mannerisms and the way she dresses to impress Danny. In "American Beauty", Angela is put into the stereotypical "whore" status even though she is a virgin solely due to her sexual appearance. In "My Fair Lady", Eliza is swayed into becoming a true "lady" and changes her ways completely for society's acceptance. Looking at these last two examples, the "Madonna-Whore" dichotomy is truly exemplefied. These examples only constitute a very small piece of a vast array of popular and influential movies out there. There are many theories as to why these gender stereotypes actually exist such as "that it is men's awareness of just how powerful women can be that has created the attempts to keep women small" (Kilbourne, 262). Regardless of origin, the fact is they do exist and in a very strong form and worst part about all of this is the fact these stereotypes come in so many shapes and sizes. They are not limited to surfaced ideologies and their inferential characteristics take them to a much deeper and darker level. In a world where women are constantly receiving mixed messages it is almost impossible to obtain true identity and individuality.
-Terrefe, Wubet. "Sexism in TV, Advertising, and Movies".
-Kilbourne, Jean. "The More You Subtract, the More You Add". "Gender, Race, and Class in Media". Simon and Schuster. 1999.