Traditional Gender Roles

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The late 1900s were a time of rapid social changes in regards to traditional gender roles, many of which are still are a deeply engrained part of society. Prior to the 1960s, the established identity of the woman did not pertain to who she herself was, but to her family and household. The average 1950s woman would commonly be referred to as someone’s wife or mother. Through the times of the Women’s Liberation Movement and various other events heading a step closer to gender equality, people have struggled to change the perception of the female gender role. In discussions of gender roles, a controversial issue is whether the changes really did have a significant impact on view of women. Although some contend that the reshaping of the structure…show more content…
According to the Huffington Post, “For many young women, "Evolution" struck a chord, opening their eyes to the narrow definitions of beauty they grew up with and the way images were manipulated to fit said ideals.” However, the article later also gives a more realistic standpoint on this campaign. Nina Bahadur asserts that “An estimated 80 percent of American women feel dissatisfied with their bodies, and 81 percent of 10-year-old girls are afraid of becoming “fat.””. (Source A) This can all be traced back to images ni the media. More and more, there are non-naturalistic portrayals of women in media and advertising with the exception of few companies campaigning for natural beauty. Many images in the media project a very unrealistic standard of what beauty should mean for women, and these images have a big impact on how young girls and women view themselves. Consequently, women have low body images and illnesses like eating disorders. Betty Friedan’s Feminine Mystique explores the psychological impacts of a new culture of domesticity, such as depression, restlessness, anxiety. If “many of the models shown on television, advertisements, and in other forms of popular media are approximately 20% below ideal body weight, thus meeting the diagnostic criteria for anorexia nervosa”, what are the growing teenagers supposed to look up to? (Source B) Teenagers having to struggle with such disorders and negative perceptions of themselves have probably seen an image of the perfect body in some way, shape, or form. Advertising also plays a critical role. American Progress offers evidence that most of the casting and production of advertisements that we see on screens every day are done by male planners: “Although women control 80 percent of consumer spending in the United States, they

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