Image source: empirestatetribune
Over the past century westernised countries have witnessed the feminist movement, equity in the workforce and the right to vote, however, media representations of women are still often misogynistic.
The Newsroom is a modern example of portraying a poor representation of women within the show. Maureen & Lacob (2012) state that the shows foundations are; women helping men commit acts of journalism and any attractive woman will find one of the male leads attractive enough to date therefore, a poor representation of women within the workforce. This nevertheless leads me on a tangent to analyse Disney films.
Disney is renowned for promoting the perfect female princess that undertakes domestic duties, falls instantly in love with the prince and will change herself to suit the male leads lifestyle. I will argue that films such as Snow White were simply a product of their era and when this film was first produced the feminist movement had not taken force to the extent they had today, thus, can be argued this film was merely mirroring current social conventions. Though it can be seen within the last decade Disney has progressed with producing; Brave, Tangled and Frozen with Frozen being the most successful progression of gender roles (Grammer 2014).
Frozen demonstrates that there is a stronger love than just a romantic love and also condemns the female lead marrying a Prince she has only just met. Compare this to Little Mermaid and Snow White whom barely know the Prince they have fought hard to marry. This is a significant progression which we also view in Brave where the female lead makes the statement that a woman does not have to aspire to marriage (Grammer 2014).
Disney may have forgone the storyline of women having to aspire to have a husband but has society? The example of Julia Gillard comes to mind, Australia’s first female Prime Minister who was constantly condemned within the media regarding her physical appearance, lack of children and living in a de-facto relationship. If Disney can now produce content that can produce the message that women do not need to be married and should take the time to get to know their potential husband first, then why can’t the Australian media undertake the same ideal instead of criticising Gillard for her not being married? Instead they should have focused on her role as a politician. Whether Gillard was married or not would not affect her position as Prime Minister.
Therefore, it is clear media is progressing with the hope of Disney but still holds a large misogynistic element within its content.
Lacob, J & Ryan, M 2012, ‘”The Newsroom”: Women Problems Around in AaronSorkin’s HBO Series’, The Huffington Post, viewed 29th May 2014, < http://www.huffingtonpost.com/maureen-ryan/the-newsroom-women-aaron-sorkin-hbo_b_1641982.html >
Grammer, S 2014, ‘”Frozen” movie breaks the ice for Disney’s gender stereotypes, University Wire, viewed 1st April, < http://ezproxy.uow.edu.au/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.uow.edu.au/docview/1492368465?accountid=15112 >