Popular Culture and Sexual Identity

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For some time now, the media has played a significant part in the views of how sexual

identity is displayed. Traditional male was displayed as the strong rugged type and the

traditional female a weak homemaker or sex symbol. In poplar culture, these views have

changed. The feminine revolution of the 60's and 70's, have changed the way the roles

of women are displayed. The homosexual revolution of the 80's, 90's have enabled Gays

and Lesbians to be more open with their sexual orientation.

The traditional role of the men was the providers and protectors of the family. Men

were sent off to work and at times spent several days away from the family in order to

make ends meet. The media had displayed men as the rugged, strong cowboy type. The

traditional man did not nurture the children or express emotion due to looking weak in

their children's eyes. Arabs and Libyans regard women as creatures apart, weaker than

men in mind, body and spirit. They were considered more sensual, less disciplined and in

need of protection from both their own impulses and the excesses of strange men

(http://countrystudies.us).

According to traditional upbringing women were considered as the homemakers and

raiser of the children. Women were not allowed to work outside the home due to the men

controlling everything. When World War II broke out, men were summons to war and

the commercial industry began to suffer. Women were then summons into the workforce

to pick up the slack of where the men were absent. The media displayed ads of women

working in the factories and taking over the roles men held. During this time, the

feminine revolution began to take place. Many women refused to become involved due

being afraid of what the men would think. When the men returned home from war,

women were sent back to the home so men can regain their role in the workforce.

Women found it difficult to go back to the homemaker role due to their independence

during this time. African American women had endured change of traditional roles since

slavery. Men were taken away from the family to work for slave owners and the women

were left to not only raise the family but provide for them financially as well. According

to traditional Judaism are seen as separate but equal. Women's obligations and

responsibilities are different from men's, but no less important (http://www.jewfaq.org).

The traditional roles of the man and woman have changed drastically. The media

displays the popular family as men and women are equal partners. The economy now

takes two incomes and women are making just as much money as men. There are still

some circumstances where women work the same job as men and are paid less, but those

times are changing. Men are now staying home with the children because the women

make more money. The movie "Mr. Mom" showed how a man who lost his job, stayed

home with the children while his wife worked. In changing the home roles, the husband

realized how difficult and important his wife home job was, that he perfected it in a way

that showed that men can be stay at home dads. Oprah Winfrey show often has segments

of stay at home dads and how well rounded the children are due to this change in roles.

The media also has a big affected on the homosexual revolution. The media tends to

set the attitudes the public has toward homosexuals. At one time gays were supposed to

be silent about their lifestyle, but now are encouraged to tell all on popular daytime talk

show. The talk shows encourage on-camera fights and vivid descriptions of those whose

identities differ from the norm. All of this increases their ratings and makes more money

for the producers of the show and they do succeed where others have failed by giving

voice to those who are otherwise...
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