Sexism is prejudice, discrimination, or stereotyping, generally against women, based upon sex. Sexism is a cynical retort to a threat which is neither real nor imagined. Nowadays, sexism has a distinguished role mainly concerning image, and conceptions regarding how women are depicted across Media and life. The media contributes significantly as it has an authoritative role in sexism against women. The media has established fixed standards regarding the desired appearance of women. Women then found their presumption of civilization and more eminently of themselves, based on what they view around them. We all absorb media in numerous ways, and the media portrays imagery that we subconsciously or consciously consume, and imprint images in our conscious of “reality,” the manner we deem things should be. These further affects women since certain expectations are established on which they must adhere to.
The media, educational institutions, and entertainment icons collaboratively promote and exhibit gender assimilation, even though specific yardsticks that women must meet are already established. The media together with entertainment icons particularly hold a powerful persuasion on women’s perspectives of themselves, specifically teenage girls undergoing awkward shifts of adolescent to womanhood. For illustration, Britney Spears is a worshipped pop icon playing a persuasive role in adolescent girl’s lives worldwide. While she is generating money from touring combined with selling albums, Britney is persuading the susceptible minds of women and young adults and their view of themselves. Additionally, she is establishing paradigms in her teenage fan base perspectives as they glorify her. Adolescent girls begin obsessing over her image and strive to take after Britney Spears. They then purchase similar clothing and continually monitor their weight because Britney Spears’ photos as conveyed in magazines portray her as slim. What the adolescents cannot apprehend is that quite often, individuals whose pictures are depicted in magazines are ninety-five percent airbrushed to perfect the flaws an individual possesses. Therefore, girls acquire an unrealistic perception that they must resemble the individual promoted by the magazine.
The brains behind the publicity of Britney Spears’ ranking are the directors heading the record company. Seeing as young women are increasingly susceptible to the reality that their self-regard is easily swayed by another’s actions or image the directors feed on this. They know for them to garner money off of Spears; they must mold her into a classic young adult; therefore, teenagers easily relate to her as an individual and an image. Clothing styles along with fashion trends, in particular, considerably assist gender’s social structure, especially women. The sheer existence of a yardstick for the valuation of beauty automatically appoints a specific group to govern the other. This makes individuals constantly judge each other to ensure they exist in the approved gender classification. Stylish, fashionable clothing is designed for a particular, minority women group, which is, small-breasted, narrow-hipped, skinny and tall. The pressure into fitting theses clothing styles is unrelenting and produces faulty self-perception and insecurities. Adolescent apprehensions are not uncustomary and can end in eating disorders, suicide, and depression.
Self-esteem is fundamental in both sexes as it aids them to define who they are individuals (self-identification) physically and mentally. High standards depicted in media makes women self-consciously cognizant of how they should look like. The modern diet fads example the zone, Atkins diet, and the south beach diet are forcing women to feel like they need to shed weight to have the ‘perfect’ appearance. Additionally, new technologies have been crafted to lengthen youthful appearances. This further places a perception of society that it is not correct to age. Aging and diet aside, youthful and thin pop icons/celebrities meet the supposed “beauty standards” of contemporary society conveys a message to women and adolescents that it is “wrong” being a particular size or own a specific image. Consequently, this quickens the process of women and young adults to develop eating disorders or even dejection because of low self-worth. Most media forms force this upon women, and as they absorb the portrayed information, they form a distorted mentality of themselves. Individuals lacking in self-esteem are vulnerable to influences of flawlessness when there exists nothing like perfection. Images of women as the media depicts them are usually thin, young, and highly attractive. Seeing this, young women strive to imitate what is portrayed; many become wretched by so doing. Normal bodily changes-body features like getting older, adding weight, leg and underarm hair, and face pimples are all shown as highly unwanted or even unusual.
These body enhancement procedures are sometimes mortal and end in death. A person should not have to undergo matters concerning life and demise to alter a trivial imperfection about them. Constantly, women are made to feel as if they are lacking and that they should take body altering procedures to improve their bodies and themselves to be nearer to the norm. This can end in emotional and psychological harm and also eating disorders in especially in women obsessed with altering their natural bodies to look pleasing and feel “accepted” by society. The public starts to acknowledge media-set-norms and assimilates them into their morals. Furthermore, the individual then believes what media portrays and what they deem right. This is when sexism is birthed. Media utilizes unrealistic and impractical standards against other individuals and begins judging them based on their appearance. Women are considerably affected by this because they must cope with the existing social peers. For them to fit in, they try perfecting themselves and alter/modify their appearance by following latest values and trends. Unfortunately, currently, people still pass judgment on others based on what media portrays as desirable and accurate.
Women should not regard irrational standards that will ultimately cause their lives to be wretched. Despite the public’s and media’s perfection standards, an individual should be content with their appearance despite how they look. Rather than aspiring to fix small flaws by undertaking extreme measures like starving yourself to remain thin or considering cosmetic surgery to keep an attractive and youthful appearance; it is wiser for women to accept their imperfections and remain content. The society has established standards to define women. At times, these paradigms are formed to set stereotypes on genders to mark their individuality. I firmly believe such standards should not exist. Additionally, each individual should live based on his/her standards, not standards set by others.