MAGAZINES AND GENDER: INTroDUCTION
Key to this area is the issue of representation, although we will be covering the
codes and conventions of magazines, the institutions (who owns them etc),
audiences (how we read them).
The two questions that underpin this whole area are:
(board) How do magazines aimed at men and women specifically represent
Do magazines reflect gender stereotypes, challenge them or actually
Discuss the two questions in general and put some of the key points on the board,
Language, advertising, layout, content, images, colour, font…for the first question.
Before we start, it is important that three words are fully understood
(board) SEX: biology…boy or girl
GENDER: the roles or behaviours that society expects us to adopt –
SEXUALITY: sexual preferences (heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual)
Discuss: Does our sex or sexuality determine our gender? Is our behaviour
determined by nature (biology) or nuture (society)?15MINS
Obviously ideas change over time: listen/look at this quote from a womans magazine
(Womans Own 15th October 1952) from an article called 'Looks do count after
' don't let yourself go – especially in the mornings. Wear a pretty crisp overall and
leave him with a good impression for the day! … you have to rise early, prepare your
lord and masters breakfast, and see him off the premises before 8.30 a.m.'
(Board) brainstorm gender stereotypes
men are/should be women are/should be
men like women like
Magazines use these stereotypes to reinforce gender roles, and therefore
Choose a magazine and go through looking for examples of how this done (look at
language, image, font, colour, content, layout). Write down your findings.
Feedback to class by giving some examples.15 MINS
What types of magazine are there?
Womens/mens/youth/house and garden/motoring/radio and
tv/hobby/computer/general (Cornwall Today)/ organisation and interest
(Greenpeace, big Issue).
What are magazines for?
Information;Entertainment;The medium of advertising;They exist to discover social
attitudes and sell products to the people that hold them NOT to change their