Who’s shaping whom?
Melicha Ahmat explores the representations of women through the media and its influences on society.
In Australia, everyone relies on some form of media for vital everyday information. Whether it be news, music, movies or the latest trends, it’s always there to be seen and heard by everyone. But can everyone trust these different types of media when it comes to the portrayal of women?
We see advertisements on billboards, television and magazines that often symbolise women as objects of desire. The number of times a beautiful, drop-dead gorgeous woman has been displayed on any advertisement is countless.
Sexy, slim and seductive is what women are preferred to look like.
These types of advertisements such as the one pictured above deceive the public into believing this is how a woman should look. This is evident by the bizarre stories etched into WHO and Women’s Day magazines where women and men undergo extreme plastic surgery just to look like their favourite celebrities.
Not only do magazines demonstrate how women should look and dress, they also show women how to behave. Nearly every month Cleo or Cosmopolitan publish raunchy lift-out sections that “teach” women how to be subject to their male counterparts. These kinds of publications leave women fussing over the shape of their bodies, fashion and their own personal life just so that they can fit into the one perfect stereotype. As they become more involved with the idealism of the ‘perfect’ woman they are also making themselves victims of the media.
Christina Aguilera is just one of many popular female idols that encourage women to be independent and feel sexy without having to change physical appearances. However the use of the word sexy is taken to an extreme as seen in her music clip “dirrty”. Audiences have no need to look further than the name to figure out what it’s about. Other female R&B singers like Aguilera ...