Gender in the Mass Media- Projecting Masculinity

Topics: Gender, Gender role, Male Pages: 4 (1397 words) Published: October 15, 2012
The presentation of gender in the mass media and projection of masculinity

The mass media play a significant role in a modern world, by broadcasting information in fast pace and giving entertainment to vast audiences. They consist of press, television, radio, books and the Internet. The latter is now the most developing medium, however, TV also has a wide field of influence. By creating a certain type of message, media can manipulate people’s attitude and opinions.

The mass media has a great power and reaches large audiences. In order to create a medium which is universal, understandable and acceptable for numerous and diverse recipients, senders very often use stereotypes, which fill the social life and evoke certain associations. However, mass media not only gives people information and entertainment but it also affects people’s lives by shaping their opinions, attitudes and beliefs. It controls social life by invisibly transferring the dominant hegemonic ideology. In the case of gender roles, the societies have established the hegemony of males by institutionalizing of male dominance over women. Nowadays the differences between male and female roles are smaller, however mass media still perpetuates traditional gender stereotypes. Moreover, due to their great influence on people’s attitudes, they can depict certain social groups in negative and unrealistic manner. By manipulating the message, media can create a certain image of reality, which is consistent with the policy of the dominant group. As a result, the reflection of a real world is incomplete and distorted. Although people are aware of the unequal representation of certain social groups in mass media, it is hard to remain objective and insensitive to its influence.

Commercials are the vast source of gender stereotyping, because they are adapted to the specific, either male or female target, and are “the reflection of the recipient”....
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