Representation of women in media today

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  • Representat-ion of Women in the Media
    • Tend to concentrate on their sexuality, emotions and narratives focus on their relationships
      • Despite women's roles in society changing there are still some stereotypical representat-ions of women in which they are defined by men's judgements
      • Their construction in eg. glamour mags is unrealistic and instils unattainable aspiration in audience
      • However there are also texts that offer more realistic representat-ion of women
        • in film and TV women now have key roles and are active rather than passive
          • Film - Katniss in Hunger Games
            • less victim more hero
          • Women are defined by what they do not what they have done to them
    • Fearne Cotton 2011 Cosmopolitan Cover
      • Appeals to both men and women
        • 'women want to be her, men want to be with her'
      • Cover line related to her defines her by her relationship and emotions
        • 'being in love'
      • Image is constructed through visual codes, mode of address and clothing
        • Ambiguous image
          • Strong body language and posture but very sexualised
        • Defined in terms of body size and size
          • Highlights 'firm thighs' in jump line suggesting all women should aspire to have her body type
      • Other cover lines represent women in terms of beauty sex and consumerism
        • Sell lines of 'miracle beauty buys' gives audience aspirations who do not look like the female construction
      • Unrealistic image
        • includes air burshing which gives a representat-ion of perfection
          • Unattainable for ordinary women
    • Laura Mulvey's Male Gaze
      • The use of women in the media which are purely there for male objectification
    • Some texts play with accepted stereotypes in order to challenge them
      • GHD Straighteners 'Twisted Fairytale' campaign
        • Has subverted stereotypical representations of women in fairy tales to create strong women who do not need to rely on men
          • Leaves behind male hero figure as 'twist' at the end
          • When a text presents an alternative representation that 'plays with' or challenges audience expectations
          • In TV advert Rapunzel rides off on hero's motorbike with a leather jacket on over the traditional 'princess' attire
          • In print advert Red Riding Hood i sexually attractive and purposeful
            • Engages in direct mode of address with audience
            • Iconography and graphics are that of a fairytale but representation of R.R.H. remains different to original story
        • Includes Rapunzel, Cinderella and Red Riding Hood
          • Leaves behind male hero figure as 'twist' at the end
        • However although the women are strong and overcome men they are stereotypically beautiful and it is the beauty aid - straighteners - that are deemed responsible for their success
          • This makes the women in the campaign ambiguous
            • Open to more than one interpretation


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