Life, Love, and Dirty Diapers

Study of Women and Men in Movies

So this is the part where I tell you guys I’ve decided to drop the last series I was working on. Why? Because to be honest, while it was interesting to work on, I didn’t enjoy it that much and there’s a new Time list out already. Perhaps in the future I will do one on the current Time list, but who knows? I’m flexible.

Also, you may wonder why I’m blogging now. I have a new little guy at home. Well to be honest, the sleep when the baby sleep thing doesn’t work real well for me during the day – if I don’t feel tired, I can’t make myself sleep without ending up majorly frustrated. I am trying to rest and take it easy though and blogging is better than cleaning in terms of taking it easy. So that’s why I’m blogging, if you’re wondering that. To be honest, in a lot of ways, even though I’m still recovering, I feel better now than I did when I was pregnant and I have a lot more energy. Little guy is a really good, calm baby and he sleeps really well so I have to do something to stimulate my brain or I will lose it.

So I thought I would write about a study I came across – it’s about a year old, but I don’t think anything has changed and the data is still very relevant to today. Basically what the study did was to analyze the top 100 films from 2008 in terms of men and women.

Some of the insane things they found – men had 67 percent of the speaking roles compared to 33 percent for women. Is this a subtle reenforcement of women should be seen but not heard? It very well could be. It also found that women were more likely to wear provocative clothing and to appear nude than men were. I think this is a huge problem because it reenforces the idea that women are sex objects and that their bodies need to be put on display. If it’s in our movies, you can bet that’s the message that it’s sending. Even now, as I write this, my husband is watching Iron Man 2 in the background and the female that’s breaking in is dressed in a super skin tight black outfit, clearly meant to look hot, while the man breaking in with her is dressed in a suit. There’s no reason her outfit needs to be so skin tight and there’s no reason it needs to have a plunging v-neck either – does that really help her break in? I don’t think so. One of the scarier parts of the study found that teen girls in movies were just as likely to appear partially nude and more likely to wear sexy clothing. No wonder teen girls struggle with body image so much when the teen girls are being portrayed as sexy in so many movies. It’s a lot of pressure.

Anyways, I feel like somewhere in my head I knew this, but looking at the actual numbers makes it seem kind of shocking. I mean, I knew that women are classically portrayed as sex objects in movies, but still. You can check out the full thing here.

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