By Edward Singleton
Sociology students were exposed to the world of hyper-sexualization and subjugation toward women in media in a film screening titled “M Is For Misogyny.”
The film screening hosted by Sociology Professor Elieen Le and co-hosted by East Los Angeles College women’s center representatives Sandra Ibarra attracted over 45 students.
“What does Misogyny mean to you?” began Le as she probed students for knowledge on the subject. No one answered.
“Miso means hatred and Gyny means women… It’s a huge problem that is actually all around us,” Le said.
The room became silent as she clearly had everyone’s attention to the phenomenon that is Misogyny, a phenomenon completely repulsive, yet accepted by many.
“I can see that some of you are really thinking about this,” Le said. The film covered marketing tactics by huge corporations like Carls Jr., Pepsi, Axe Body Spray that use the hyper-sexualization of women to sell their products.
The problem being that not only do these tactics reach their target audience, effectively, they also reach an unintended audience, children.
Exposing children to hyper-sexuality sends the message that only those who are sexy have power and that is what should be strived for.
For children who struggle with their identity, this can be a huge stumbling block to their personal development.
The cycle of hyper-sexuality is perpetuated by young people who admire actors and music stars who use sexuality as a tool for profit.
The cost of admiring hyper- sexuality can have negative consequences for our youth.
Whether it’s a lack of self confidence in the youth due to the way media portrays men and women having to be slim and voluptuous or having to be emotionless, tough and have multiple sexual partners.
This false sense of worth can lead to sexual promiscuity and possibly sexual assault.
The film’s overall message is to stop and think about what messages the public allow to be normal. Just because seeing Paris Hilton have an orgy with a burger is normal doesn’t mean it should be.
“What do you think about that?” Le said. Her approach to solving this problem begins with questioning, the media and learn about women’s issues.
“I will tell my daughter ‘know what you want. Don’t try to be someone you’re not and stand up for what is right because you can make difference among your friends’,” Flora Morena, sociology major, said.
The problem is that we accept, either directly or passively, the idea that sex is power, instead of appealing to logic. Companies and musicians often appeal to an audience through sexual desire. A desire that turns our young girls into “sluts” and our young boys into “pimps.”
A solution to the hyper- sexualization and subjugation of women in media is to analyze and
examine media content, to look for meaning and speak out when the message is detrimental to society.
Young people are the future, ensuring they have positive role models should not only be important, it should be a priority.