Reading articles lately on sexism in film and the way women are portrayed. The last thing I am is an activist, but I am a realist. Honest, blunt truth, even if it’s not pretty. The truth is…sexism in film, sexism towards women, it’s true. The world of film has always been and still is dominated by men and the stories/movies we see portrayed continue to validate the male perspective of women, only.
There is nothing wrong with the male perspective, per se, yet it actually becomes problematic when it’s the “only” perspective being given, because it creates a disparity on what stories are being told. No matter how you slice it and how much you uphold what is true and right in your own personal life, a culture is created by its stories – the stories it shares with each other through a mass medium.
Think about how you want your sister, mother, daughter to see herself as a woman. Would it be as a desperate, air headed, needy, husband hunter or a sugary sweet homemaker who always puts her needs second to the men in her life? Or the dreaded cold corporate success hunter type woman who dares not cater to her family’s every whim. Or on the other side – do we really want our sons, fathers, brothers seeing constant reinforcement that men must be strongest, willing to be violent, misogynistic to be cool, and treat women like dirt because men don’t have time to worry about shit like that?
This is no rant, just an observation as a woman. I think men could agree if they looked at it from a little girl’s or a little boy’s perspective. Ask the simple question – what are good girls for, what are boys good for…? Whatever a 5-year-old boy or girl had to say to that, that is the REAL truth inside ALL our minds because we were told the same thing. Those 5-year-olds are mirroring the world they see, as are we, no matter our age. We all have a responsibility to ensure that all perspectives of a story get a chance to be told. We all can change the ties that bind us to stereotypical behaviors.
Therefore I want to send more messages to the moviemakers out there that we want to see more women in roles that are realistic and show them as powerful and strong – not only as a mate for the male lead. TAKE THE RESPONSIBILITY UPON YOURSELF – IF YOU HAVE WOMEN YOU LOVE IN YOUR LIFE – STOP LOVING MONEY MORE THAN THOSE YOU LOVE AND HELP RESHAPE CULTURE BY SHOWING BOTH SIDES OF OUR PSYCHE. It may take some time to build, since “they” say the female lead roles don’t bring as much bank, but the way to ensure they do is to give it to us and watch the culture evolve.