How does Print Advertising affect young women in society?
"Women as sex Objects and Victims in Print Advertising", "The media and body image: if looks could kill", "The impact of idealized images in advertising: a model of third-person effect" and the BBC article "Sexualisation 'harms' young girls" all explain how women, in modern times, are victims to print advertising in which they are portrayed negatively. They each discuss how women are now used to help sell products and are almost always shown in sexy outfits are at least shown as being subordinate to men. In certain cases women are dehumanized and compared to objects, just to appeal to men. They all also explain how young women in society now compare themselves to these women in print media, which has negative effects on society since the people in advertising are usually digitally altered to be "perfect". Now society has a skewed perception of perfection- skinny beyond healthy standards, and fit and beautiful.
I am not surprised by these findings. Just from observation and from being a young women in modern day society I have seen first-hand the effects of print advertising on young people. The advertisements now in days, use women to sell products, through their sex appeal or sexy bodies. However, this adds to the fact that the younger generation now believes domestic violence, brutality, and sex are all trivial issues due to depictions of women in print media. These advertisements also contribute to the growing rate of eating disorders among young women. Many women now feel the need to be skinny and do so through drastic measures, such as anorexia or bulimia.
Recently, Jean Kilbroune created a documentary called “Killing us Softly 4”in which she discusses the way women are depicted in the media.
In this documentary she especially focuses on the way advertising depicts women and the idea of femininity and then she discusses the effects this has on young children. She even incorporates the show “Toddler’s in Tiaras” and explains how this show makes these young girls into sex objects and therefore trivializes the idea of sex. Her overall message is that women need to realize that it is unrealistic that we will all look like these people in print media- those people are digitally enhanced or have a specific body type. Therefore, it is unhealthy for young girls to strive to be that skinny, or look like these models in print media.
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