Depictions of Women in Daily Television

December 12, 2011
By Anonymous

In our daily television, we see women who work as maids, who dream about getting a guy, and who are willing to do and give everything for a man. Television teaches our children many things about women today. Movies and media portray women as weak, unintelligent, and desperate.

To begin with, women are shown as weak in movies and in the media. In a particular scene, Popeye must travel through the desert to save America. The first thing we see is Olive Oil following him. This shows, in my opinion, women can’t do anything by themselves and that a woman is not helpful to the man. Also, when Olive Oil, Popeye’s wife, and the pilot are following Popeye through the desert, the first one who debilitates is Olive. Next, when Popeye witnesses how Olive Oil plunges to the ground with exhaustion in matters of seconds, he is forced to carry Olive Oil while he completes the rest of his journey. When Popeye gets to his destination, he must give more than a gallon of water to Olive Oil, who is unconscious in his arms. In this movie, a woman cannot be the one who encourages the pilot or herself to not depend on a man. Because a woman is being an encumbrance to a man by having the man take care of them when they can’t do it by themselves, the typical shown, full of strength man must step in and help us. The role of a woman is to chase a man and then retreat when they can’t keep doing it any longer. Is that what we want our children to think of women today?

In the second place, women are shown as unintelligent in movies and the media. For example, in the Beauty and The Beast, there are 3 women who are in love with Gaston. He is the most handsome man in the town, but he is very rude. These women like Barbie Dolls who have perfect blonde hair, huge chests, a beautiful face with loads of make-up, and are very skinny. In a scene, the people of the town are singing him a song about how perfect and good he is, and Gaston is carrying these three women, who are sitting on a bench, with his biceps. These women yell in delight of being thrown by such a muscular and robust man while they are being thrown into the air continuously. This would teach boys that it is fine for them to put women in danger because women like it when they’re put in hazardous situations. This image of the three women gives children the idea that all women act dramatically, therefore, they could be violent with women at any time they want. From the appearance of these women, children would learn that women are always supposed to look mesmerizing in order to please men. Also, the idea that is without given in this scene is that women should dress provocatively so that we can be attractive and have certain genes (huge chests) to allure men. In another scene, Belle I said to be odd because she reads most of her time. She is the weirdo of the town and everyone judges her because she’s the only woman in town that reads. This tells young children that if reading if your hobby, then you should get rid of it because you will not be properly welcomed into the society and that you’re eccentric. This teaches young girls that women should not be reading. Instead, they should be looking for a boyfriend that will make them happy forever.

Equally important, women are shown as desperate in movies and the media. In The Little Mermaid, Ariel, a sixteen year old and beautiful mermaid, travels to the surface of the sea where she falls in love at first sight with Prince Eric. One day, when there is a dangerous storm and Prince Eric happens to be on his ship, the ship gets wrecked and Ariel saves Prince Eric from drowning. Ariel sings to him with her beautiful voice and then leaves Eric on the shore of a beach when she detects Eric’s men coming for him. When Prince Eric wakes up from the deep sleep, he only remembers the angelic voice of somebody who sang to him. He is determined to find this girl, whom he thinks is the girl of his dreams. Ariel is trying to find a way so she can walk and finally meet with the prince. She makes an agreement with Ursula in which Ariel promises to give up her voice in exchange for human legs. Also, in order to keep her legs and live among humans forever, Ariel and the Prince Eric have to kiss, but they must both be in love. However, if Ariel and Eric do not kiss in three days, Ariel must return to the ocean and will not have her voice due to that Ursula gets to keep her voice, yet Ariel agrees to Ursula’s proposal. Ariel goes to the surface, where she immediately gets her human legs; she is not able to walk right at first and, of course, not able to talk because the second she stepped on land, Ursula got her voice. Eric spots Ariel on the beach and goes to her, with the hope that she will be the girl who sang to him, the girl of his dreams. Nonetheless, Eric’s hopes seem impossible or very distant when he learns that Ariel cannot talk; however, he offers Ariel his home and gives her a room and beautiful wardrobe. Ariel is desperate to make the Prince fall in love with her, but concludes that she will not be capable of succeeding in making the Prince fall in love with her if she does not have her voice. Ursula disguises herself as a beautiful woman, and tricks Eric, making him believe that she is the girl of his dreams by singing with Ariel’s voice. So, Eric will get married with Vanessa, Ursula in disguise, after the day he meets her. This shows that it is convenient for women to give up something they identify with for a man’s love. Because the man do not approve of her, a women get rejected. This teaches children women must be willing to change to get a man to love them. This portrays women as ignorant because we do not think of the bad things that might come because of that one choice we made. Women are shown as desperate because they try to get what they can’t have. Women are depicted as defiant because we disobey our parents and immoral because we try to steal each other’s boyfriend.

In most movies today, there is no reality and no good messages. This makes people believe that all of us will have a perfect life. These movies make expectations for women. They tell us what to be like, how to behave, and how to look. From these expectations, children get the notion, or an image, of what a woman should be like. Children wonder why in movies there are women that look or behave unreal, and they even ask their parents why does this happen. From their childhood, little boys learn how to expect a woman to be like from these movies. For this to come to an end, media needs to stop showing these assumptions of women so there are no expectations of women, so women in turn can be what they want and not be afraid of men living of suppositions of women. How can we expect our children to think and behave if we keep showing negative impressions of women to them in our daily television?

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