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Is mass media removing or intensifying gender stereotypes? Why do you say so?

Gender stereotypes are deeply rooted in the history of mankind. Men are expected to be strong providers and protectors while women are expected to be submissive and conservative. The cliché “boys are central and girls are peripheral” is something that people has always unconsciously recognized, especially because this idea is encouraged by powerful features of the society like mass media.

The role of mass media in intensifying these stereotypes has been determined in the past. Television programs, radio broadcasts, Internet websites, and many more, use gender stereotypes to convey messages that target certain groups in a diverse audience. They are known to promote the hegemonic ideology that men are superior over women. However, these days, some say that with the modernization of mass media, this hegemonic culture has already been removed.

Although plenty perceive this to be true, I beg to disagree. I still believe that mass media continue to play a very significant role in intensifying gender stereotypes.

Commercials, TV shows, and movies still highlight the roles that men and women are supposed to portray, and sadly, people do not seem to realize that these forms of media are bombarding us with subtle provocations that we should act according to what society would recognize as acceptable. Print ads, magazines, and other forms of mass media constantly remind us that men should always play the lead role and women remain on the sidelines.

Mass media showcasing gender roles would have been okay if they are presented in ways that empower every gender. For example, if a TV program shows that stay-at-home moms do not work because they want to be hands-on in raising their children, and not because it is what society expects them to do, then women would not feel belittled. Also, superhero movies should not show that superheroes only rescue helpless and weak women. They should show that every member of society, regardless of gender, can be vulnerable and in need of the help of a superhero.

I know that gender stereotypes are difficult to dissolve and that mass media will continue giving specific designations to each gender. Therefore, gender stereotypes should just be presented positively in ways that are not derogatory and discriminating.

질문&어휘 문법TIPs 해석
questions

1. What are gender stereotypes?

2. How does mass media intensify gender stereotypes?

3. How can mass media present gender stereotypes positively?

vocabularies

peripheral 주변적인

hegemonic 지배하는

bombard 퍼붓다, 폭격하다

subtle 미묘한

provocation 자극, 도발

belittle 하찮게 만들다

vulnerable 취약한

derogatory 경멸하는

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