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How important is the media in setting gender roles - Essay Example

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This essay describes the role of media in the formation of the perception of gender roles in the society since media is one of the most influential platforms that have wide-ranging impact on every sphere of the public life and society at large. Media has a significant part in setting gender roles…
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How important is the media in setting gender roles
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"How important is the media in setting gender roles"

Download file to see previous pages The children, youngsters and people at large are vulnerable to the portrayal and textual messages in media because they are regularly exposed to them. Scientific research reveals that in cognitive learning, the individual learns by listening, watching, touching, reading or experiencing and then processing and remembering the information. (Think Quest, 2008). Theory of cognitive learning essentially implies that through various means of learning processes, people are able to retain the information in the memory and apply it as and when required. The theory becomes highly relevant when applied to media portrayal of gender roles. The impact of those visuals and the textual contents are reflected in the behavioural pattern of the people who consciously or unconsciously adapt the messages and images in their attitude and behaviour. Thus, role of media become a critical element in setting gender roles within defined societal paradigms. Television is most influential format of media that considerably impacts people’s opinion and promotes diversity of roles that are gender based (Carter, Branston and Allan, 1998). Oprah Winfrey Talk Show is an exemplary example of empowerment of women. In the male dominated society, the rise of Oprah Winfrey, an African American woman is nothing short of a miracle. She serves as the most influential role model for millions of women across the world who has triumphed over social and racial prejudices to emerge as a symbol of woman power. Oprah Winfrey symbolizes empowerment a woman, who has risen above gender and race. Indeed, television has greatly facilitated in promoting empowerment of women as one of the most crucial issues for the wider...
This essay "How important is the media in setting gender roles?" outlines how different forms of media portrays both gender and their gender roles. The general image of women has also got a great boost from the media. The news channels, showcasing the pertinent women issues of their empowerment and equal representation in national politics have had huge positive impact on the perception and opinion of general public. It plays a prominent role in the portrayal of women, especially those above fifty years of age. But it can also be said that though women may share almost equal platform on visual media as TV anchors, newsreaders, in general, they have not been given the space and the importance that they deserve.
Celebrity status and glamour seem to be the important factor for projecting them in media. Looking at the increasing number of TV soaps and mainstream cinema, one discovers that the appeal for women protagonists invariably decrease with age! There are fewer films and prime time soaps with matured female artistes as main characters. Whereas their counterparts seem to have a new lease of life after fifty years of age! Sean Connery (The Rock, Finding Forester etc.), Richard Gere’ (Chicago, Flock etc.) are few actors who are able to get main lead in cinema, while in their 50s and 60s. Gender bias seems to dominate all areas of media, including news media which is highly retrogressing and demoralising for women professionals. Then again, literature has also a unique way in perpetuating new ideologies and values within the transforming societies. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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