Thursday, January 31, 2013

Post 2, Media is/as Education

    "Unpacking the Myths that Bind Us”, Christensen

The author talked a lot about how media influences us in ways that we are not aware of. Both the author and some of his students realize that our self-image is shaped by the media. This reminded me of a movie I watched in a couple of other women studies classes called Killing us Softly. This movie shows how television, magazines, movies, etc, teach us both the roles of women and the roles of men. The focus on women in advertising has a lot to do with appearance, and one that is completely unrealistic. The movie shows how images are photo shopped and the ideals are unattainable. You can find the summary here and part of the video here:

I also watched another movie called Tough Guise that showed how media teaches men to be strong, heroic, physical, and even violent.  This shows that both men and women are influenced by the media. Again, you can find the summary here and part of the video here:

The author also talked about how students did not want to admit that they were influenced by the media. Some students felt like they had control over the media. I think a lot of people might feel this way, but they also don’t know that they can be influenced very quickly and subconsciously. I believe this is talked about in Killing us Softly, but I also have learned it from my psychology classes.  This is called subliminal messaging
After doing a google search on subliminal messages, I was able to find lots of examples, especially with children's media. Here's one example:
What's really sad about these subliminal messages and images in children's media, is that children are probably even less aware of what is happening and more receptive to the messages. Once you get older, you can start to realize that these things we've been watching or seeing were pretty bad. But,  when you are young watching it, you're not thinking like that. You're pretty much just taking it for what it is and accepting it.

 For class:  
Has anybody seen these two films? What did you think about them?


  1. we should teach our youth and children what is right on TV. They should learn what is racist or sexist on tv programs.

  2. I was one of those children who was less aware but I CAN ADMITT IM GUILTY BECAUSE AS I GREW UP AND BEGAN TO DISCOVER THESE SUBLIMINALS I WAS too happy and do not want to stop watching my favorite shows because of the little comments that were made. I can say I take the time to educated my lil cousin and many of the kids who come to my center about the true meanings behind their "favorite" cartoon or movie.

  3. Great blog post! Yup, I've seen large chunks of both in various classes, but I can't remember if I saw the entirety of either films. I think they're both very interesting and informative. In regards to sociology (my major), I'm particularly interested in gender and in the media (and how the media affects the way we view gender), so I'm reasonably partial to both films (from what I can recall of them, that is, 'cause my memory's pretty bad).

  4. Great post, Sarah! I haven't seen either of the two films (although I will be seeing Killing Me Softly 4 this upcoming Friday at a film series @ Libertalia! Pretty excited to watch it). I like that you used both examples (while I haven't seen Tough Guise I have read some excerpts from Jackson Katz' "Ways of the Badass) because often times conversations about media and their effect on youth/people often focus on the ways in which it effects women when men are also very much falling prey to this. The violence that you mentioned is particularly salient given the recent acts of mass violence that have obvious links to the way masculinity is perceived and taught in the US.

    I like that image from your subliminal messaging section. I can't tell if that's from the Proud Family or Kim Possible (or maybe neither but it looks like one of the shows, more like the latter). Interesting ways that supposedly progressive/positive shows still play into stereotypes.

    Thanks for sharing,
    Andrea S.

  5. i love the videos you posted in your blog, they were great! and the pictures also! racism and subliminal messages i feel are all over the world, and almost cannot be stopped. the media and advertising just add the mess of social media that we have today. i did see tough guise and i thought of this movie while reading this article and was glad to see that you had the same idea!
    great post :)