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Final thoughts

9 Mar

Over the last ten weeks, I have studied the effects that gender can have on an individual’s identity. Identity matters because it is a reflection of our view of ourselves and the expression of her we are in relation to others. Typical stereotypes of woman are that they are sexual and submissive. While typical stereotypes of men are strong, successful, and dominant. The theories and the ideas have been pointed out to me in this class have always been present in society. I think everyone is guilty of allowing a stereotype to cloud their judgement at some point in their lives, including myself. However, because of what I have learned, now it is much easier for me to understand why and take a step back to look past the stereotype.

This class has really opened by eyes to pay attention to the different stereotypes that are ever present in our society. It showed me how important and influential pro-social media can be. It can teach us about marginalized groups and give us positive stereotypes to help combat the negative stereotypes. Positive pro-social experiences can give individuals the motivation to seek out other pro-social situations in their lives. 
The most shocking thing to me was the underrepresentation of marginalized groups in film and television. Almost every portrayal of a woman is based on a stereotype. If a woman is in a film she is usually a there as a hyper-sexualized character, if she is the tough girl fighting crime, she’s still doing it have naked.

The ideas and views that I have accepted because of what i have learned in this class are now easily pointed out in daily life, especially in film and television. 
In the show Modern Family, the gay couple embodies the homosexual stereotype. One of the men is a blue collar worker, very manly, and the other is a stay at home dad, who is very effeminate. This is an example of Queer theory, which focuses on socially constructed. This helps to explore gender and sexuality. 
Another important part of this show is the gender of the character Gloria. She embodies the idea that hispanic and latina women are stereotyped on television. She is characterized by hyper-sexualization and she also has a strong accent. Which is typical of Hispanic or latino characters on television.

Overall, I think that more pro-social messages need to be present in film and the shows on television, especially in relation to gender. There have been many advancements since the first representations of the stereotypical housewife on television, however there is still a lot of work to be done in order to have positive gender portrayals.

 

 

Hall Pass

2 Mar

Summary: I chose to analyze the movie “Hall Pass” for my 2011 film. This movie is about two men who are unhappy with where their lives are currently at and want to relive the old days of college and partying. After a series of embarrassing events for their wives, they finally agree to give their husbands a “hall pass” to go out and have sex and meet girls with no consequences for one week. At first the men are skeptical, but they decide to go ahead and take their wives up on the offer.

 

Analysis Application: The producers use humor to illustrate the difference between male and female way’s of thinking and acting.  When the men first hear of their hall pass, they think it could be a trick or a trap. This is a representation that women aren’t t be taken seriously, a representation that is shown a lot in media. In one scene, the men try to go out to a nightclub and pick up women. However, they fail miserably. They spend the whole time in the bar checking out women. This exemplifies the male gaze, that they women are there simple to be looked at and lusted for. This is also an example of the “thin” ideal for women. All the women they pick up are very beautiful, young, and slender.  They even make jokes about it. The most interesting thing about this movie however, is that the cast is one hundred percent white. There is not one single black character. This is very disappointing considering the strides film has been making towards diversity, and this is an 2011 film.

 

Response: I really enjoyed the idea behind this film. It is not as if these men are skeezy guys trying to cheat on their wives, they are both kind of dorky and very good husbands. I like that it uses humor to address ways in which people of different genders can interpret situations differently. It also does a good job at showing ways in which men and women think alike. I think it proves that we all have worries and doubts but it’s okay.

Milk

24 Feb

Summary: In the movie “Milk”, Harvey Milk is a gay man who has decided to run for election into political office. Based on a true story, this movie follows him though the struggles of being an openly gay man in the 70s. The opening scene in the movie shows police men raiding a gay bar and arresting anyone inside for simply “being gay”.  Fighting against prejudice and stereotypes that are very prevalent for this time period. Running in the state and city elections proved to be unsuccessful. He continues to preserver, and in 1977 he was elected into a seat on San Francisco’s Board of  Supervisors. He was the first openly gay man to ever be elected into office in California.He is all about political activism and making the United States a better and more accepting place for gay men and women. In the end of this movie Harvey Milk is assassinated because of his beliefs.

Analysis: This movie deals with the struggles and persecution that Harvey Milk endures because of the prevailing stereotypes in America about gay men in the 1970s. I think this movie has an important pro-social message of acceptance of diversity. It also carries a personally helpful message that persistence pays off when overcoming personal fears and stereotypes. The parasocial contact theory is also important in this movie. We can learn about the experiences of marginalized groups though a positive mediated message. This acceptance can carry over to real interactions with marginalized groups.This could also be motivational to other people struggling with acceptance because of their sexual preference. They can look to this movie for help managing their emotions and boosting their self-esteem. It also sends a good message that one person can make a difference in society, no matter what their gender or sexual preference is.

Response: Overall, there is avery positive message in this movie.  I think this movie does a very successful job at combating the negative stereotypes that are present in our society. It is very shocking and interesting that some of these harmful stereotypes are still so prevalent, such as name calling and discrimination. Some of them are not as pronounced and obvious, such as arresting or assassinating people because of their sexual preference, but there are still some people who are homophobic or very prejudice against those who are gay or bisexual and this is still a very real issue in society today.

Modern Family-Advertisements

21 Jan

 

Summary:

ABC’s comedy series, “Modern Family”, introduced in 2009, has quickly gained popularity. Modern Family is about a blended family that includes looks at the everyday life struggles that families have to deal with in a humorous way. This one blended extended family is made up of three separate households. Claire and Phil Dunphy are married with 3 children, Luke, Haley, and Alex. Claire definitely wears the pants in the relationship and Phil is very laid back, possessing feminine characteristics. This is an example of mom-ism. Cameron and Mitchell are gay and adopted a little girl from Russia named Lilly. Jay Pritchett, who is Mitchell and Claire’s father, is remarried to Gloria Delgado, a young Latina woman, who has a son from a previous relationship named Manny. Gloria sometimes can fit the vamp stereotype, she has dark features and looks exotic, she uses her sexuality to her advantage in situations with her husband. In this episode, Claire is running for local city office and her family is trying to help her win by giving her advice and support. Cam and Mitchell are shocked when their daughter Lilly starts dropping the f-bomb. Cam cannot help but laugh, which only encourages the little girl, thinking she’s making her dad happy she doesn’t understand why it’s a bad word. While Jay and Gloria think their dog is trying to commit suicide because he keeps jumping into the pool.

Analysis:

Gender roles are ever-present in the show Modern Family. They are especially evident when looking at Cam and Mitchell’s relationship. Cam is the typical flamboyant gay man, and he stays at home with their daughter Lilly. Mitchell is the breadwinner for the family, working a corporate office job and being typically masculine. I find this interesting because in prime-time television there is never just a “average” man playing the role of a gay man. Gay men are always portrayed as hyper-masculine or very feminine and flamboyant. It goes from one extreme to the other.

The advertisements shown with Modern Family are targeted at a very diverse audience. There is so much diversity in the show, it is liked by both men and women, at any age, and can also be a family show. The commercials vary greatly, mostly directed at general audiences. There were lots of food and restaurant commercials, commercials for new cars, appliance stores, like Best Buy, and HHgregg, and wireless plans.

All these commercials are for products or industries that depend on more than one specific consumer. They depend on men and women of all ages to keep their business. KFC cannot only target middle-aged moms, or they would go out of business. There were also lots of family targeted advertisements. Such as a Bank America Commercial about how you can get cash back on what matters most to your family, whether its baby food or fuel. I did notice how almost every woman pictured in an advertisement seemed to be on display, emulating the male gaze. They were always pictured as objects, touching their faces. While men were always shown doing masculine activities, such as driving a sports car 100 mph down a winding road.

Response

Overall, the show Modern Family does a good job at making light of everyday struggles and trials that families have to go though. They use humor to narrate the audience though different situations that occur to real families. They appeal to a large demographic because they emulate the idea that a normal family is doesn’t consist of a man and woman with two kids and a dog, like how a typical family used to be. The family dynamic is changing, and this show calls that to light in a humorous and accepting way.