Gender representation

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Gender representation

  1. 1. Gender Representation Aim of lesson: To examine feminism, the male gaze and post-feminism
  2. 2. Initial Thoughts on Gender Representation How are males and females typically represented or portrayed in music video? E.g. Men are likely to play a musical instrument Women are more likely to dance
  3. 3. Gender Stereotypes In Music: Current Research Findings <ul><li>Men engaged in significantly more aggressive and dominant behaviour </li></ul><ul><li>Men represented as independent, adventurous, unemotional and competent </li></ul><ul><li>Stereotypical Gendered occupations apparent (i.e. Males as FireFighters/Mechanics Women as Cheerleader/Waitress) </li></ul><ul><li>Women engaged in significantly more explicit, sexual and passive behaviour </li></ul><ul><li>Women represented as objects of sexual advances or as sexual objects </li></ul><ul><li>Sex role stereotyping and negative attitudes towards females </li></ul><ul><li>Women more likely to be presented in provocative or revealing clothing </li></ul><ul><li>Women portrayed as decorative objects that dance, pose and do not play instruments </li></ul><ul><li>Research findings NOT restricted to the Hip Hop genre </li></ul>Research Findings taken from ‘Joining the Dots’ May 2009 OBJECT
  4. 4. Feminism (1960/70’s) <ul><li>A movement in which women questioned their position within patriarchal society & the ‘private sphere’ of ‘home/children/domestic bliss’ </li></ul><ul><li>Serves to uncover, challenge and eliminate oppression and dominant gender imagery </li></ul><ul><li>Women began to debates the narrow range of stereotypes present across all media; </li></ul><ul><li>Women as virgins, mothers or promiscuous </li></ul><ul><li>Women as sex objects </li></ul><ul><li>Women are inferior to men </li></ul><ul><li>Women as domestic/based in the home </li></ul>
  5. 5. Sexual Objectification and the Male Gaze (Laura Mulvey 1975) <ul><li>Definition of Voyeurism: Erotic pleasures gained from looking at a sexual object (who is unaware of being watched) </li></ul><ul><li>Presence of women solely for the purpose of display (rather than narrative function) </li></ul><ul><li>Female on display is passive and objectified for a male gaze regardless of viewers gender </li></ul><ul><li>Voyeuristic treatment of female body in ‘male’ videos – use of dancers as adornments to the male ego </li></ul><ul><li>The inclusion of women for display is a staple element in music video’s – across all genres </li></ul><ul><li>Women connote to-be-looked-at-ness and are the object of the male gaze . </li></ul>
  6. 6. Stereotypically ‘Female’ Occupations <ul><li>Britney adheres to traditional gender stereotypes by taking on the roles of: </li></ul><ul><li>Secretary </li></ul><ul><li>Air Hostess </li></ul><ul><li>Waitress </li></ul><ul><li>Each occupation emphasises highly sexualised costume & behaviours </li></ul>
  7. 7. Video Case Study: <ul><li>Buttons </li></ul><ul><li>( Pussycat Dolls/Snoop Dogg ) </li></ul>- Watch the Buttons video. - Taking Mulvey’s theory into account what do you think a feminist reading of the video would say ?
  8. 8. Pussycat Dolls - Feminist Reading <ul><li>Sexual power derived from physical attractiveness to men. </li></ul><ul><li>Snoop’s voyeuristic male gaze/POV shots invites male viewer to join in. </li></ul><ul><li>Suggestive body language. </li></ul><ul><li>The Doll’s used literally as objects to create patterns in an aerial shot. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Post-Feminism and the female gaze <ul><li>Post-Feminism (1980’s) </li></ul><ul><li>A re-appraisal of Feminist values </li></ul><ul><li>Does not strive for ‘equality’ as this assumes men are ‘the best’ - they wish to surpass male achievements </li></ul><ul><li>Objected to theories which position them as objects of the ‘male gaze’ </li></ul><ul><li>Identifies a ‘female gaze’ - women actively desiring men </li></ul><ul><li>Women began to assert their right to dress and be sexually attractive </li></ul>
  10. 10. Post-Feminist Readings <ul><li>Rihanna is not on show for the benefit of male audiences, but is enjoying herself experiencing different identities. </li></ul><ul><li>She is successful, independent and in control. </li></ul><ul><li>Connotes messages of Empowerment/Confidence/ Independence to female audience . </li></ul>In contrast to other representations here Britney is in control and dominates men within the narratives. She also takes a variety of identities e.g. super heroine. There is also opportunity for the female gaze.
  11. 11. Pussycat Dolls - Post-Feminist Reading Thinking back to the Buttons video what post-feminist readings could be made about the representation of gender?
  12. 12. Pussycat Dolls - Post-Feminist Reading <ul><li>Offer messages of sexual empowerment - assertive, provocative and in control of ‘the gaze’ </li></ul><ul><li>Confident, sassy, sexy icons challenging traditional assumptions about passive female sexuality “I’m a sexy mama/ Who </li></ul><ul><li>Uses a provocative male address challenging Snoop to “loosen up my buttons babe” - however, the dolls prove ‘too hot to handle’ for Snoop </li></ul>
  13. 13. Video Case Study: Watch a more recent of the Britney Spears video. Try to identify feminist and a post-feminist reading in regards to representation of gender.

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