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Gender Roles in Media

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claudia chan

on 27 November 2014

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Transcript of Gender Roles in Media

Gender Inequality
History and Focus
Social media started from emails
Evolved towards programs such as instant messengers (MSN)
Myspace and Friendster
Main focus: Social networking sites
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube and Tumblr
Currently popular social networks
Social media creates an unrealistic approach towards self-image
Uploads are by users
Followed by popularity which can affect self-esteem
Pressured by social media and their standards
Expecation and Populartiy
Social media has cause various stereotypes to appear between the genders
Include how females should / should not act (duckface, fishing for compliments)
Mostly around female/male teenagers but other age groups are affected as well
Privacy issue which relates to cyberbullying
Pressure from others (whether or not others approve/like their posts)
Mixed response from others
What is the main issue?
Gender Roles in Media
Claudia, Steven, Milton
Soc. 100A
November. 28,2014

#NotAllMen #YesAllWomen
This issue related to female harassment and violence has been noticed in the community
Against the stereotype of an angry feminist
#YesAllWomen is a hashtag that trends on social medias such as twitter and instagram
In response to the hashtag #NotAllMen
This is to impact others to notice how women are being affected today
Problem has existed since the beginning of film and theatre
People are unaware of the issue, though subconsciously affected by the false portrayals represented
- Government is aware and can impose regulations
Sex Role Portrayal Code for Television and Radio Programming 1990

General Principles

Equal representation of actual social and professional achievements, contributions, interests and activities

TELEFILM - crown corporation that supports Canada’s audio-visual industry
< 6%
of its feature film funding in 2013 to films produced by women
Women in View - an activist group in support for gender equality in media
Released their annual report on gender equality in film and TV industry
1. Demanded a gender balance in media
2. Government funding to promote films, including tax incentives
3. Equal employment (equal pay) in TV and film
- Used to test fiction for gender bias
1. It has to have at least two [named] women in it
2. Who talk to each other
3.About something besides a man
Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Failed 2 of 3 tests:
The three female characters Arwen, Eowyn, Galadriel never get the chance to meet, or talk.
The Social Network
Failed 2 of 3 tests:
The female characters never speak to each other and were often ignored and sometimes treated as prizes.
Only 56% of the 4500 films reviewed passed all three tests
Gender Representation
In Video Games
•Gender inequality in video games have been around since its early years (starting from the 80s)
•Although it has changed, forms of gender inequality still exist in modern day games
1) As Sex Objects
•Exaggerated sexual or feminine traits
Representation of Gender
-Oversized breasts, usually thin build
-Assumed that such factors and representations increase sales (ex: Dead or Alive franchise)
•Mou and Peng: 4 Possible female stereotypes based on appearance and behaviors
1) As sex objects
2) As victims
3) In feminine roles
4) As heroes or action characters
Failed 2 of 3 tests:
Mulan only speaks with her mother and grandmother but only about beving a good wife and about marriage
2) As Victims
•"Damsel in distress"
-Often kidnapped by antagonist to catch the protagonist's attention
-Concept used as a plot device, giving the protagonist a motive.
-Female characters needed saving from male protagonist
•Female character is victimized or killed to progress plot
3) In feminine roles
•Minor characters acting as wives, daughters, assisting characters, etc.
•Smaller roles to accompany the main protagonist
-Ex: Cortana from the Halo franchise
4) As Heroes or Action Characters
•Main protagonists or heroes of the game
•Some still present female stereotypes such as being sexualized
-Ex: Bayonetta, Lollipop Chainsaw,
•Female characters were often created from a male's perspective that is less than "realistic"
•It is assumed that white male characters take central roles because of the predominantly male audience, which is better able to identify with the game's protagonist

•Games were often organized around masculine themes, especially more popular ones (Sims)
-Violence, gore, war, hierarchical competition
-ex: Call of Duty franchise

The Lara Phenomenon
•Named after "Tomb Raider" protagonist Lara Croft
•Appearance of touch and competent female character in a dominant position
•Gender representation in video games are evident and recognized by outside parties that investigate the norms presented in games
•However, gamers themselves do not often mind these stereotypes
•Today, there are gender-neutral games that are more casual and feature less gender-isolating gameplay and goals
-Examples: Wii sports, Farmville
-Include a more realistic and diverse portrayal of women
-Criticized and derided by "hardcore" gamers as inferior or not "real" games because they do not follow the usually masculine tropes of gaming
•Box art
-Depicting non-central, sexualized female characters => high sales
-Presence of central male characters are also positively associated with sales
Works Cited
•Jansz, J., & Martis, R. (2007). The Lara Phenomenon: Powerful Female Characters in Video Games. Sex Roles, (56), 141-148.
•Near, C. (2012). Selling Gender: Associations of Box art Representation of Female Characters With Sales for Teen and Mature-rated Video Games. Sex Roles, (68), 252-269.
•Sims, C. (2014). Video Game Culture, Contentious Masculinities, and Reproducing Racialized Social Class Divisions in Middle School. Signs, 39(4), 848-857.
•Portrayal of gender representation in games can influence youth and how they perceive their roles as girls/boys
•Girls may be expected to be needy and dependent, and their responsibilities lie in maintaining beauty and sex appeal.
•Boys would be perceived as violent, aggressive, and possessive, and have the role of protecting and defending women
-Violence as a method of problem-solving
•Interactivity of video games results in the influence and shaping of a child's identity
-Playing these games feel like they are in the character's situation, and may even feel like real life.
•Dietz, T. (1998). An Examination of Violence and Gender Role Portrayals in Video Games: Implications for Gender Socialization and Aggressive Behavior. Sex Roles, 38(516).
•Mou, Y., & Peng, W. (2008). Gender and Racial Stereotypes in Popular Video Games. Handbook of Research on Effective Electronic Gaming in Education, 922-937.
Eagly, A., & Steffen, V. (n.d.). Gender Stereotypes Stem From The Distribution Of Women And Men Into Social Roles. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 735-754.

CAB-Sex Role Portrayal Code for Television and Radio Programming. (n.d.). Retrieved November 27, 2014, from http://www.cab-acr.ca/english/social/codes/sexrole.shtm

Bechdel Test Movie List. (n.d.). Retrieved November 27, 2014, from http://bechdeltest.com/
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