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Gender Inequality in Media & Pop Culture

Posted February 10th, 2014 at 6:45 PM by Ultraviolence
Updated February 10th, 2014 at 6:55 PM by Ultraviolence

This has been playing on my mind for a while. This is topic particularly bugs me, as all my living/in contact family members, apart from my granddad, are female. This has lead me to highly respect women. So it's deeply annoying to me personally when we still see examples of inequality of the sexes. Especially when it comes to sexualisation.

First of all I wanted to talk about the media's relentless attacks on women for how the look, but not men (as much).

Cosmo Magazine branded her as a plus size model? What is "plus size" about her? This is not a good message to send to women, in particular young and impressionable teens.

The term SIZE ZERO also annoys me very deeply, and how it seems to be fashionable to be size zero by some publications. We ask ourselves, "how are so many teenage girls being diagnosed as bulimic & anorexic", when really, it's the media vicariously pushing it.

Don't get me wrong. If a woman is happy and comfortable being a size zero, then thats fine. But it frankly looks extremely unhealthy and shouldn't be labelled as "the perfect body". No body shape should really, should it?

But where is the male counterpart for this? It would be ignorant for me to say it doesn't happen. Of course it does. But on a lesser scale. Even to the point where you barely see it in mainstream publications. Neither should happen. But it seems like, to me, many media outlets still very much see females as inferior, suggesting they all need this perfect body. All need to do this diet to be thin. It's so wrong on many, many levels.

Sexualisation is something that I wanted to talk about too. Personally, I think a person has every right to be as sexualised as they want. As long as it isn't being forced on to them, I see no problem with it, however I do admit often cringe when I see my nieces of 5 & 8 talking about how sexy Rihanna looked or how big Nicki Minaj's boobs are.

I feel like in pop culture there is one thing that is very, very obvious. It's ok to sell sex with the female body, but not the male. Two songs from recent times only further back up my point.

In September 2012, the absolutely amazing Marina & the Diamonds released the video for her single How To Be A Heartbreaker as part of her Electra Heart series. It featured men wearing only speedos in showers.
However, the song didn't take off (which for me is a shame. Marina is a super talented woman) and I can recall it being only played past a watershed on some channels and being completely banned on others for "homoeroticism".

However, cast your minds back to March 2013. Robin Thicke has just released the most snore-inducing ****ing song ever, and the video came complete with several semi-naked women and himself, Pharrell & T.I. seemingly dehumanising them in the process.
Now I don't know if this is such my extreme bias working here, but this video really is untasteful. The fact that the song was so successful, even after people began to interpret the lyrics as "rape-y" (going to avoid this area. I don't think that was the intention), really annoys me. One of the most successful songs of 2013, but, lets be honest, the song itself is incredibly mediocre. Shows what a good bit of sex can do, eh?

Recently however, I have enjoyed the backlash that seems to be occurring against this. Lily Allen's genius song and video for Hard Out Here being a gold highlight. Pop culture has became very focused on sexualisation of women but not of men. Surely, it should be both or neither?

Thanks for reading my little rant.
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  1. Old Comment
    antemortem's Avatar
    This'd be a great topic in Culture & Media!
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 6:47 PM by antemortem antemortem is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Sydian's Avatar
    You're my new favorite. <3 Hate Blurred Lines also lol.
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 7:16 PM by Sydian Sydian is offline
  3. Old Comment
    Ultraviolence's Avatar
    Originally Posted by Minzy View Comment
    This'd be a great topic in Culture & Media!
    I was thinking about putting it there but I thought it might be a good way to use my blog!
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 7:21 PM by Ultraviolence Ultraviolence is offline
  4. Old Comment
    Jonghyun's Avatar
    I agree with Dave, it would make a good thread, despite that it's already a blog. XD
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 7:59 PM by Jonghyun Jonghyun is offline
  5. Old Comment
    Angelique's Avatar
    She's size 12? She looks great and has good proportions.
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 8:46 PM by Angelique Angelique is offline
  6. Old Comment
    donavannj's Avatar
    Originally Posted by Angelique View Comment
    She's size 12? She looks great and has good proportions.
    She's size 12 because she's something like 6'1" or something. Rather than "plus-size", she should be described as a tall model, since that's what she actually is.
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 9:23 PM by donavannj donavannj is offline
  7. Old Comment
    Kanzler's Avatar
    She's plus-size cuz she's literally big-boned, she has a large frame.
    Posted February 10th, 2014 at 9:51 PM by Kanzler Kanzler is offline
  8. Old Comment
    Aquacorde's Avatar
    Size 12 and above is considered plus-size, despite it being average. Plus-size usually denotes that the person who fits that size is fat, or so says everything that advertises to women. Despite the fact that bodies can't go below a certain size because of bone structure, really. The problem is that "plus-size" is now almost synonymous with "fat", and actually the very existence of plus-size itself- some brands use it to denote a wider thigh/hip/waist in their clothing, but most of the time it just serves to segregate "skinny" from allegedly fat.

    The whole notion of skinny being the way to go is really undesirable anyway. If you are consistently healthy/fit/in shape, you should end up being as thin as your natural structure will let you be. And you'll feel great.

    Being overweight is a problem as well, but I mean. I feel like the skinny trends are problematic because it's all about sexualization. The media (mostly men, tbh) are telling women "you need to conform to our idea of beauty so we will find you desirable". That's gross.

    ~~rambling sorry~~
    Posted February 11th, 2014 at 8:27 PM by Aquacorde Aquacorde is offline
  9. Old Comment
    Kura's Avatar
    People forget she's probably something like 6 foot 5 so she could very well be a plus size.

    It's like when I tell people I'm a size 00, and they're shocked because I don't look skinny. I'm 4'10" so of course it wouldn't look sickly on me. And then when people say "Oh there should be a ban on size 0!" It's stupid because others don't consider that we might all come in different shapes and sizes.

    I see Dono is saying the same thing as me. Haha we are on the same page!
    Posted February 12th, 2014 at 5:02 AM by Kura Kura is offline

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