The Way that the Media Portrays Women

Our society is a society that largely follows the media and our culture is greatly influenced by it. The different types of media that influence us include, music, magazines, TV shows, movies, commercials, and many more. Media often pushes us to conform to the norms of society. It puts pressure on an imperfect race to be perfect.

A piece of media that has informed my particular perception of beauty in a negative way is the Hardee’s commercials. They use women in a sexual way to sell their products. Although this is a common practice, Hardee’s takes it to the next level. In some of their commercials, they have one of their main actresses, Katherine Webb, basically naked. These commercials are shown on every kind of TV station. This means that even young children could be exposed to these crude commercials. That is how media works, they start at a young age and form children’s minds into thinking everyone is supposed to be a “certain way”.

These kind of advertisements lead women to believe that they need to be skinny, have large breasts, a big butt, a curvy figure, and look as Katherine Webb does to be beautiful, or to be able to get attention from men. In many of the Hardee’s commercials, the main actress is shown eating their products. She is often making out with the food and wearing practically no clothes. How are women supposed to live up to this kind of portrayal of their gender? This kind of media is suggesting that women will eat their hamburgers and look sexy doing it, while wearing virtually no clothing. This media also suggests that all men are only interested in women that portray themselves in this way.

I disagree with this kind of advertising. It puts the idea out there that women can be treated as sexual objects and gives men permission to treat women in this way. This is not the kind of portrayal of beauty our society should be subjecting us to.

This type of commercial links to the topics we have covered in class such as fatphobia and the virgin/whore dichotomy. It pushes women to believe that they must be skinny, therefore causing a fatphobia in large numbers of the population of women. Our society pushes us to be sexy yet conservative. It pushes and pulls us in opposite directions and ultimately what I have come to understand is that you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. That is not the way women should be taught to understand their virginity. Just for everyone’s enjoyment I have posted a link to the outrageous Hardee’s commercial!

–Catherine Dearing 007



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