The Role of the Media in Defining the Ideals of Society

Running head: MEDIA SEXISM 1

Media sexism




The media is a powerful tool in the world that helps to provide the world with vital information, entertainment, and advertisement. It plays a fundamental role in shaping and defining the ideals of a society. Over the decades, the media have joined the activists and the civil advocate to call for a tolerant and an equal society. The media also harness democratic ideals in every region around the world. On the same note, the media has some negative ideals that threaten to negate the very ideals it was built to support. The media industry is a powerful source of generating income. There advertisement has become a powerful tool through which to raise the revenue. The high urge for money in the media industry has caused an upsurge of sexist advertisement and sexism in the media in general. Many advertisement targets use super model women and men as symbols to market their products. This type of advertisement affect viewers influence their perception where many end up taking the negative aspects from the media.
There are about 3,000 media advertisements every day in the US (Stermer & Burkley, 2015). Most of these advertisement use women with embodied thin type as the typical beauty to market their products. The advertisement also uses muscular men in the advertisement as the ideal type. This has led to further the notion that the slim women and the muscularly built men are the envisioned ideal of beauty in the US. The constant advertisement using these images has sent a message to many teenagers and young people and influenced their perception about beauty. This has gone a long way to influence the personal life of many. Many teenage and young women are very worried about adding weight. Many of them have resulted to a strict diet in an attempt to reduce their size. Statistics indicate that on average US states population spend around 36 billion dollars on diet products every year (Lindsey, 2015). Additionally, there is a growing tendency where many media houses employ the women and men based on looks but not qualification so as to increase their viewership. Despite the widespread attention and debate for the media houses to reduce the sexist images and sexism in term of employment, the problem is rising.
Studies show that the high use of sexual material in commercial advertisement has influenced many people perception especially the young girls. Morris a psychologist argues that the high use of profane material in the ads is causing young people to view girls as objects. Many studies show that there is a high correlation in the number of increased cases of sexual abuse and media influence through displaying highly sexual content. In fact, studies indicate that the number of sexual abuse especially among the young with statistics approximate 45,000 cases each year (Stermer & Burkley, 2015).
There is indeed devastating effect on the sexism in the media especially through advertisements. The sexism content go a long way to influence the perception of people and lead them to adopt risky behavior such as extreme diet that sometimes result to sickness. Additionally, studies have linked the media sexism and increased cases of sexual abuses. There is a need for the media fraternity to limit the use of sexist content in the advertisement and employment people based on looks.


Lindsey, L. L. (2015). Gender roles: A sociological perspective. Routledge.
Stermer, S. P., & Burkley, M. (2015). SeX-Box: Exposure to sexist video games predicts benevolent sexism. Psychology of Popular Media Culture,4(1), 47.

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