Film making is a powerful tool to send a message. Oddly enough Netflix has a vast selection of documentaries to choose from. I had a couple hours of down time while I was sitting on campus when I scrolled to Miss Representation. As I watched, I interpreted how there is so much sexism in the way in which women are portrayed in the media. I wanted to discuss what I learned and why this is so important to me.
Most importantly, Miss Representation highlights the sexuality of women in the media. As I’m bombarded by advertisements, I see women are dressed scantily and are wearing a crap ton of makeup. Victoria’s Secret is a prime example of highlighting women’s sexuality. What bothers me about this is that it demonstrates to women that we are successful if we are “beautiful” (according to the media). I can be successful by being intelligent, or working hard in my classes. My success is not determined by beauty. Another toxic idea is that women can’t be sexual unless it’s for advertising. Kim Kardashian posts semi nude selfies all the time. She takes ownership of her body, and she’s slammed for it. It’s okay to sexualize a woman’s body by selling a product, but no way in hell can a woman take control of her body. How aggravating.
Miss Representation also highlights the annoyance of “mansplaining” For those who aren’t familiar, mansplaining is the idea where men will condescend women or patronize women on a topic. This is especially important when I turn on the news to Fox. Each female news reporter is interrupted by a man when discussing a topic. That’s incredibly insulting. Yes, I’m a woman and yes I have an opinion. It’s a well thought out opinion and no, I don’t need a man to interrupt me.
This documentary reaffirms sexism in the media and the way women are treated. It’s important to me that I find awesome role models who defy these standards or who stand up against them. It’s also why when I read comic books, I like reading books that don’t sexualize female characters. Anyway, if you’re a feminist, I highly recommend this. It will anger you, but make you reaffirm why you’re a feminist in the first place. I’m a feminist and I want to change how the media views women. We are intelligent, we are equal to men and I’m more than just my looks.