Heroine over-Objectification

Topics: Gender, Superman, Female Pages: 2 (599 words) Published: February 17, 2012
Heroine Over-objectification

Julie D. O’Reilly states that women are objectified in mainstream pop-culture, specifically in comic books and television in her publication, “The Wonder Woman Precedent: Female (Super) Heroism on Trial” (O’Reilly, 442). However, few ever discuss the differences in male and female objectivity in defining bias against gender. In fact, I would venture to argue that the author sympathizes with women and overstates female objectification by injecting her own bias into comic books and television.

In her article, O’Reilly specifically epitomizes Wonder Woman as rising to an achieved level of ‘super hero’ while comparing other like-heroes’ autonomy in that Wonder Woman was not granted freedom to simply be declared a super hero as ‘Clark Kent just dons a cape’ (O’Reilly, 443). However, what made Superman a superhero was that he was not human and possessed ‘un-earthly’ powers which alone distinguished him from others. Can it not then be reasoned that he might be challenged himself to obtain trust and acceptance from the general public to prevent massive fear; for who would be comfortable knowing a humanoid existed with such massive god-like powers who might whimsically turn to evil? Or how about Batman, for instance; would one seriously believe that as the only member of the Justice League without a single super power (and fighting very powerful and clever enemies), he became so just because he was male and donned a cape? O’Reilly’s hypothesis on gender bias stretches beyond comics’ intended purpose of entertainment and lessons of patriotism, good moral and ethical behavior, and imagination among readers of all ages.

A study conducted by students at the University of Houston, concluded that in a mock trial exercise for reverse discrimination cases, female mock jurors favored female plaintiffs over male plaintiffs, and in contrast males had no gender-related differences in plaintiff’s arguments (Elkins, 1). Or to put it another...

Cited: Elkins, J. Teri, Phillips S. James, and Robert Konopaske. "Evaluating Gender Discrimination Claims: Is There a Gender Similarity Bias?" Sex Roles 44.1/2 (2001): 1-15. Print.
O 'Reilly, D. Julie. "The Wonder Woman Precendent: Female (Super) Heroism on Trial". From Inquiry to Academic Writing 2nd Edition Ed Greene, Stuart, and April Lidinisky. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin 's, 2008. 442-455. Print.
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