Monday, July 29, 2013

The Portrayal of Women

Class began with a lecture about the social construction of gender and how it is pervasive within our society. The title of the lecture was called, “No History, No Self; Know History, Know Self.” The lecture described how gender roles are shaped by institutions and how they affect humanity as a whole. Gender is legitimated by religion, law, and science, so it is difficult to resist the preconceived gender expectations.

 Dean Almandrez gave us two options for class, we could either follow the usual schedule or we could watch "Miss Representation" in the afternoon session instead of watching it after class. The class decided to do the latter because we wanted more time to work on our Action Plans.

Our new classroom
"Miss Representation" was one of the best documentaries that I have seen! The movie opened my eyes as to how the media portrays women. The documentary gathered a plethora of evidence and examples and combined it into this one documentary. On a day-to-day basis, we hear discriminatory remarks about women or we see offensive portrayals. However, we do not acknowledge these negative portrayals due to their sporadic presence. The documentary made it clear and obvious that women are negatively portrayed in the media with the use of clips from broadcastings, videogames, and news articles. Women are objectified through the media; as a result, they believe that their voice is not significant. The objectification of women in media was displayed in a video game in which a male character brutally killed a female character. A person consumes ten hours and forty-five minutes of subliminal messages through the media. It is almost as if one must live under a rock in order to prevent oneself from being affected by the social construction of gender

When women gain more power, discrimination accompanies their success. More emphasis is allocated to a woman’s appearance rather than what she has done. The documentary combined a series of short clips of men mocking the appearances of successful women such as Hilary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, and Sarah Palin. Fifty-one percent of the population in the United States is composed of women, but only seventeen percent of women hold congressional positions.

The portrayal of women also has a negative effect among the female gender because they are expected to reach this unattainable idea of beauty. This is partially proven by the fact that sixty-five percent of women and girls have eating disorders.

 The documentary inspired me to do everything I can to implement a successful action plan. I want to be able to be a good leader despite the implication that women should not attain such roles.

It is important to remember, however, that not everyone conforms to society’s expectations. When overcoming an obstacle it is best to turn to anyone is willing to help, female or male. A male staff member observed our class and said that some men may be a part of the problem, but they may also be a part of the solution.
After watching the documentary, it has never been clearer as to how significant it is for us to excel at what we do. We have to overcome the burden of social expectations and we need to be whoever we want to be without the acknowledgement of the social implications.

I wanted to attend a tie dye event but I decided to not go because I needed to start on my homework and to finish things up for the Ivy League Connection. I also decided to not go to the talent show. I was a bit disappointed that I did not go because it was the last big event Summer@Brown would hold.  My homework, however, is my biggest priority. After I took a shower, I decided to go down to the lobby to work on my blog. To my sweet surprise another talent show was occurring there. The auditorium, where the talent show was held ,was at full capacity.  I was able to watch the talent show for a moment and then work on my homework. My night ended on a great note!

The talent show in the lobby of the dormitory 

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