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Cosmopolitan Continuing The Burden Of Women The Essay Assignment Was To Take A Piece Of Today's Culture And Show What Its Effect Is On American Society Either Negetively Or Positively.

1870 words - 7 pages

Cosmopolitan--Continuing the Burden of WomenBe his best ever! Is the claim made on the cover of the November 2001 issue of Cosmopolitan. Following these easy steps he'll be putty in your hands. Each month Cosmo offers different ways of pleasing your man sexually and visually. It gives women insight on how men think so that we are more equipped to please them, and it is full of dating advice for women who are searching for men and it tells us what to do once we have caught our prey. It is considered by many to be the know-all to pleasing and keeping our men, maintaining our beauty, and knowing what to wear from season to season. Face it, Cosmo is this generation's version of Good Housekeeping. While most readers of Cosmopolitan feel that the magazine is geared toward women who take pride in making themselves a better mate or making themselves better women in general, Cosmo fuels women's socially constructed gender roles by promoting the stereotypes of what a conventional woman is while aiding in keeping them silent by not using its power to promote gender equality.Taking a look at the ads that are chosen for Cosmopolitan was my first tool in uncovering the assumptions held by the creators of this magazine. Most of the ads found in the magazine show women in a very subordinate role. Be it subordinate to men or the objects that they are advertising, women were not made important. The underlying meaning of the ads show that a woman can only be heard through someone or something else. They tell women that passivity is what it means to be a woman. To give an example, on page 83 there is a Reebok ad. It shows an Asian woman standing holding a fan and her hand covering her mouth, with the words Eastern Classic printed across the page. She is silencing herself which is very Eastern classical. Women did not speak out in Asian communities; they stood by and were told what to do, and in this advertisement the women is standing looking very pleased in silencing herself while selling a pair of American brand shoes. Another example of women silencing themselves is inside the special addition section of the magazine on page 85. The section is titled "His Secret Sex Wishes." The female in the photograph is smiling but has her hands covering her mouth. This is implying that women's wishes in bed are secondary and should not be spoken about. She should just be concerned with what's important...pleasing him. My final example of women silencing themselves can be found on page 39 of the special addition section of the magazine. The ad is for Frangelico...infinite possibilities liquor. The woman has her finger on her lips signaling shhh! And the caption on the bottle says "Forbidden pleasures are frequently the most enjoyable." The woman is aiding the ad's message in saying that speaking for a woman should be forbidden, which is why most say that women like to talk so much.Another way that women are being made subordinate in the ads in Cosmo is by objectification....

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