Literature Review on Gender Representation in Media
LiteratureReview on Gender Representation in Media
Organizations useadvertisements to beseech people to purchase their products. Thecurrent world has become competitive despite the burgeoning number ofconsumers. Consequently, industries are careful when selecting whilecreating and presenting their adverts to the public. One major areaof concern has been the balance of gender and the advertisementsettings. Young children are easily influenced by the contentdepicted in advertisements. The appearance, status, and social lifeof advertisers such being a single and contended parent couldinfluence the young people’s perceptions regarding life. The keytopics of discussion in the paper include how the commercialsadvertisements affect young individuals’ opinions and attitudesregarding family structures, identify and gender roles (Johansen,2012). The literature review explores the impact ofcommercial advertisements on gender representation and perceptionamong the young individuals.
As discussed byElise (2012), on average young individuals and adults viewapproximately 25,000 advertisements annually. According to hisresearch, advertisements affect one’s perceptions and gender rolessignificantly. For instance, due to rapid changes in family structurein the society, there has been an emergence of cases such as famoussingle persons. IN addition, there are individuals who advocate forchildren-free couples in order to stay happy and attractive. Othercases include same-sex couples and transracial adoptive families. For instance, when single mothers are frequently involved in theadvertisements, it indicates that times have greatly changed andwomen can live on their own without the support of men. Thou thetheme of many advertisements is not anchored on families, the keyindividuals selected to represent a company affects individualsperceptions.
As researched bySheehanin the year 2013, young people spent about 32 hours every weekwatching video games, programs, and movies. Consequent, they havehigh chances of being exposed to numerous advertisements. Researchby Shapiro(2015), shows that teens are exposed to approximately31,000 advertisements in a year. The rate of cognitive developmenttends to be high during the teenage and in the early youth age.Consequently, advertisements in many cases have an everlasting impacton the young individuals. Young individuals crave for a satisfyingand enjoyable life. Though the traditional gender roles and way ofliving are the most preferable in the society, most advertisementsare deviating from the social norms. The young individuals viewstereotyped gender role, which influences their attitude andperception towards each other. For instance, the same-sex marriageand raising of adopted children same by the gender indicates the menhave the same capability to raise young children compared to women. Young individuals are eager to learn from the media, educators andfamily members (Missbach,Allemann, Szalai, & König, 2015). Advertisementportrays especially by the women gender portrays a certain trait oflifestyle is key to achieve ones` life goals. For instance, thecommercials advertisers frequently utilize slim individuals who areof women gender and depicted them as the happiest. Research indicatesthat men are used in programmed movies more than the women. Itstereotypes one gender to be strong and capable of tacklingcomplicates tasks compared to the other such in the cartoon adverts.Research by Morgan in the past (1982) showed the advertisements andmovies affect women sexism to a large degree when compared to themale gender. He showed the gender stereotype was even common inschools’ advertisements when the male gender was commonlypresented.
As researched byWaters and Ellis (2014), commercials advertisements shape ourcultural attitudes and reflections. For examples, men appear in98.2% of commercial adverts that involve technical expertise. On theother hand, the women percentage tends to be more than 65% inadvertisements that concern household products and services. Advertisements attempt to modify individuals’ opinions regardingsocial life, services, and new products. Indirectly, peoples learnattitudes the lead to an admirable male executive or an impressivemother. The media has been powerful in reinforcing concepts that aredetrimental especially to the youths. For examples, advertisementshave been able to convince women that they can be attractive andyoung for a long period if they try to seek certain services andproducts. For example in the year 1995, the Vogue magazine wasdevoted to advertising how women can appear younger. Mostmanufacturers are crafty, and they coin their messages in a confusingway. For instance, a company may state that their products makefacial scars seem to disappear, which seems real to many consumers.
Past types of research by Wood and Diekman (2000), Madon (2003),Hobbler (2009) and Fugen (2004) argued the key gender roles wereconstructed in the social backgrounds. People’s behaviors aregreatly shaped by the newspapers, personal experiences, televisions,and advertisements. Stereotyping which is common in variousadvertisements hinders many youths from exploring their talents andvalue. As discussed by Gerding& Signorielli (2014), men are represented as moreintelligent in matters related to technology. While it may encourageother young male counterparts to strive and achieve their uphelddreams, it may discourage talented women from pursuing their goals. Various media represents the male gender as reliable experts in thefield of engineering, computer science and IT, prejudicing womencapabilities regarding technology. In addition, it leads todiscrimination when women try to seem jobs that are portrayed to bemale dominated as highlighted by DeMooij (2013).
As discussed by Chew& Leng, (2016), gender stereotyping is evidentlyembedded in commercials advertisements nowadays. Industries thatadvertise for engineering or computer projects in the country usuallyinvolve men, making them appear to possess excellent technologicalskills. In additions, men in commercials adverts involving majorprojects seem to operate with ease, while gaining pleasure from theiractivities, which gives false confidence. Additionally, advertisersuse stereotyped settings, which influence the perception andattitudes of young people. For examples, many women in advertisementsare captured in places such as home backyards, livings rooms and inthe kitchens in a relaxing manner. On the other hand, men arecaptured in areas such as sports arenas, constructions sites oroffices in most cases. These advertisement settings if not controlledleads to the conformation of young children behaviors.
According to Hesse(2015), advertisements influence one’s identity. Hesse afteranalyzing the past kinds of research concluded that theadvertisements in the social media affect young individual’sidentity. Identity entails whom people relate to the society, theappearance, and their beliefs. As discussed by Hesse, an individualsidentity is not fixed, but changes over time facilitated by influenceand desire to achieves specific goals. When a person understandshis/her unique traits, it becomes easy to identify one’s strengthsand weaknesses while relating with others or pursuing a certain role(Lindsey,2015). The social media make the young individualsemulate celebrities, who in most cases do not represent the real lifescenarios. Consequently, a false representation may prevent youngchildren who imitate celebrities from achieving their goals.
Scharrer& Ramasubramanian, (2015), conducted an intensiveresearch in 27 states of Europe. They discussed how genderrepresentation in the media such as the advertisement, TV and newsmedia hinder the accomplishment of gender inequality in the world. As per their research, only limited acts and practices exist thatguaranteed fair representation of both male and female in commercialsadvertisements. Large organizations such as multinational companieshave resources and pay their adverts. They are highly pursued by thesocial media. Thus, their gender advertisement flaws are ignored astheir form a reliable source of revenue. Governments in manycountries have failed to define the gender anti-discrimination actsclearly. Consequently, companies that adverts are gender biases arenot arraigned in courts or accountable for their action.Consequently, the issues of gender discrimination andmisrepresentation have persisted for an extended period despitevarious governments agencies across the world advocating for equityin gender representation. Most companies have discovered that youngindividuals are very influential (Shyles,Barry, Biagini, Hart & Jack, 2012). Many companiesare shifting to the use of young children in advertisement, whichinfluence individuals’ attitude. For instance, young girls are usedto advertise household products that comprise soaps and foods stuffs.As a result, they tend to be attributed to home-related chores. Dueto the act of communications, men are represented differentlycompared women adverts. For instance, commercial advertisementsportray women as physically weak, nurturing and caring, victims,afraid and submissive (Ottosson& Cheng, 2012). On the other hand, men areexhibited as assertive, leaders, problem solvers, advice providersand brave. The displayed characteristics affect young childrenattitudes, one of the major reasons why careers such as security andengineering involve fewer men compared to women.
A majority of thepast types of research were based on the general social media such asmovies, radios, TVs and newspapers. Moreover, many existing pastrelated kinds of research were based on the public that comprisesyoung children, teens, and adults. Less information was provided onhow the commercials advertisements representation affects youngchildren perception and their attitude. The research paper willexplore extensively how gender role are impacted by the genderrepresentation in the social media. After data collection andanalysis, the project will provide a tangible advice to thegovernment, social media groups and the public regarding theimportance of gender balance in the community. The research will ofgreat use to the parents, who encounter many challenges while raisingtheir young ones. Currently, the number of commercialsadvertisements has increased enormously in the social media such asFacebook and the YouTube, making the young individuals have aconstant exposure. As a result, a detailed research is important toevaluate key advertisements that are detrimental to youngindividuals. The past types of research provide a solid guidance inmy project, as they shed light on both positive and negativeinfluence of the social media. They have provided a deep reflectionon how the commercial advertisements if not controlled are likely toimpede the goals of young individuals.
In conclusion,gender representation in the social media is of major concern. Industries greatly modify their adverts contents and settings inorder to increase their returns. The past kinds of research indicatethat gender imbalance continues to exist in the social media, whichinfluences the young individuals` perception and attitude in life.For instance, the female gender is more influenced by advertisementscompared to the male.
Chew, S. S.,& Leng, H. K (2016). Therole of social influence in purchasing sports apparel.
De Mooij, M.(2013). Globalmarketing and advertising: Understanding cultural paradoxes.Sage Publications.
Gerding, A.,& Signorielli, N. (2014). Genderroles in tween television programming: A content analysis of twogenres. SexRoles, 70(1-2),43-56.
Johansen, E.J. (2012). ThePortrayals of Family in Advertising: Children`s Perspectives.
Lindsey, L.L. (2015). Genderroles: A sociological perspective.Routledge.
Missbach, B.,Allemann, S., Szalai, E., & König, J. (2015). Foodadvertise-ment and gender stereotypes on Austriantelevision. ErnahrungsUmschau, 62(4),59-65.
Ottosson, T.,& Cheng, X. (2012). Therepresentation of gender roles in the media: an analysis of genderdiscourse in Sex and the City movies.
Shyles, L.,Barry, K., Biagini, D., Hart, C., & Jack, L. (2012). Faceit: The impact of gender on social media images. CommunicationQuarterly, 60(5),588-607.
Scharrer, E.,& Ramasubramanian, S. (2015). Interveningin the media`s influence on stereotypes of race and ethnicity: Therole of media literacy education. Journalof Social Issues, 71(1),171-185.
Shapiro, E.(2015). Gendercircuits: Bodies and identities in a technological age.Routledge.
Sheehan, K.B. (2013). Controversiesin contemporary advertising.SG Publications.
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