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I will be looking at women’s ‘to-be-looked-at-ness’, and examining the
representations of women as objects of the male gaze and male desires.
In simple terms, a stereotype is the application of one (usually
negative) characteristic to a whole group. The stereotype is an easy
concept to understand, but there are some points you need to consider
when looking at media representations with regard to stereotyping. For
a stereotype to ‘work’ it needs to be recognisable to the audience and
when so recognised, then judgements are made about the subject. If the
stereotype is negative, then the judgements will also tend to be the
same. The predictable thing about stereotypes is that they are
predictable! They create a sense of order and also provide a sense of
identity (even if it is a negative one!) Stereotypical judgements and
stereotypical media representations can (and often do) lead to
different treatments of groups by other groups, (sadly, often quite
discriminatory).
If we define ‘male’ and ‘female’ all we are doing…
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