September 24, 2011 / Media - Marketing & Advertising, Safety, Sexism, Youth

How the Media Train Boys to be Sexist

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The following post is cross-posted by Erin McNeill’s blog Marketing, Media, and Childhood. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and not necessarily those of The New Agenda.

Watch this trailer from the Media Education Foundation, which highlights the powerful messages boys are getting from current popular media. Or, as they put it, “Takes aim at the forces in male culture that condition boys and men to dehumanize and disrespect women.”

The issue with negative media messages to our children, as I see it, is not so much how those messages may harm our individual children, and what individual parents can or should do about it, but how these messages are changing the culture as a whole. This film sheds some light on just how the media is changing the culture, and not in a good way.

Here is how filmmaker Thomas Keith finds that media portrayals of men and women teach boys to be sexist:

Step 1: Train men to womanize
By showing constant objectification in the media – television, music videos, film.

Step 2: Immerse men in porn
“In the pornified world, which is the world we are in, boys and men learn that women love to be sexually objectified.”

Step 3: Make rape jokes
Such as the ones on Fox’s Family Guy.

Step 4:Unleash the masculinity cops
Obey the code, or you are like a woman. And you don’t want to be that (see above).

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