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The Sexualization Of Women Today Essay

2107 words - 9 pages

The TV and film industry’s portrayal of women has drastically affected many of their lives, much too often women compare themselves to the female images they see on television, film, and advertisings; at both the conscious and subconscious level, these media images of women lower self-esteem and affect behavior at every age and stage of life. We know they are unrealistic, yet they apply so much pressure on women to conform, and influence how we live, love, work and play. This gender role that society has generally considered appropriate for women is wrong. It makes so many of us women want to buy materials we don’t need, with the money we don’t have only to impress people we don’t know. So ...view middle of the document...

Our news reporters, the people we see on covers of magazines, the people we see starring in our favorite films, and they are all extremely thin and beautiful. In TV shows and in films women are often assigned a specific role—that is, to be a house wife, a mother, or both. Other women get the role of being a sex object to a man. Same with films, we have blondes who lack intelligence, African American women who are aggressive and/or “ghetto” and we have this role set up that women should only marry or be with men and that when they marry, that they must be wearing a white fluffy dress. Society then finds it unethical to do otherwise and we get all the judgment for it.
“Up to 50 percent of women are on a diet at any given time, up to 90 percent of teenager’s diet regularly, and up to 50 percent of younger kids have tried a diet at some point.” (Dray, 2011) This statistic is proof that far too many young girls are getting the wrong influence by what they are seeing on television. Most teenagers who are dieting are doing it mainly because they are not comfortable with their looks. I am an example of what happens when you let what is portrayed by these industries influence what you should look like—as someone who has been suffering an eating disorder known as bulimia nervosa, the desire to want to be thin, all the dieting and the extremes that I have gone to to be “thin and pretty” have destroyed my mental health and my overall health. Everywhere I go I see advertisements of a beautiful thin girl attempting to persuade you to buy a product that will get you one step closer to where you want to be in regards to your looks.
Society has lost sight of what is really a “normal” weight for the average female. The media’s obsession with weight and personal appearance sends a message to all women. Your body is an object meant to be admired within a certain standard. Marilyn Monroe, in her time was what we would consider normal, today, Marilyn Monroe is considered hefty or plus size. According to Dr. Nathanson, “There is not a certain size that makes people attractive, but [thinness] has become the norm. People haven't paused to consider if this is the right image or whether there are any alternatives.” (Nathanson, 2000) A large quantity of American women and teenage girls will never live up to the standard that society has set for us today; nonetheless many women like myself, will go to unhealthy extremes to attempt to reach what is considered the “normal” weight today. Far too many people think that it will not happen to them, but it’s happening all around us, women are obsessed with dieting and working out excessively. Young girls are growing up in a world that sees her as an object made solely for men’s pleasure. A world that teaches them to define their self-worth by their looks. Women’s bodies are often objectified and evaluated more frequently. Females learn that their physical appearance is important to themselves and society. As a result, females...

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