Before the millennium, traditional mass media are the main platform to deliver the impression or image of gender. The characteristics of female are easily being cast by television broadcast which includes drama, news, documentaries, chat shows, lifestyle program, films, soup operas, music videos and more. The images of women are also can be observe on the magazines, newspaper or even the song on the radio channel (Gauntlett, 2008).
We can know the role of women in different decades by analysing the content of these traditional mass media. In my opinion, female are mostly emphasize the image of being a gentle and lovely housewives or ladies in the past, but recently are more likely to exhibit stronger and tougher character with the confident attitude of female.
In the 1970s frequently discovered the television broadcast highlight the women role is important on marriage, parenthood and domesticity. Instead of adventurous, active and victorious image, women always show their weak, victimised or supportive side (Gunter, 1995). When came to 1980s, the female role in TV drama has slightly changed. Gillian Dyer realised that there is women character who act as policewomen, lawyers and more professionals and strong images start to build up (Gauntlett, 2008).
[‘Cagney & Lacey’. – 80’s TV shows]
Audience will remember the impression of female which deliver by TV and emerge into their mindset. Instead of realising the reason of treating women differently from men, most of them has this stereotype in mind naturally apply to daily life. But can know that there was really changes between 70s and 80s women’s character in drama, proved that human’s mind is becoming wider.
Besides, magazine also a medium to show the image of a women during certain period. For me, pictures or photography on magazines of women on magazine can directly reflect female represented identity at the era. Winship (1987) observed from the magazine’s idealised photographs which accompany articles about relationship and fashion. He said “firstly, that being a woman involves constantly adjusting one’s own image to fit time and place in an ever-changing game of images. Secondly, ‘real life’ is constantly thought through images.”
Moreover, the articles or content in female magazine are worth to be discuss. Many of the female related articles had highlighted the value of pleasing guys and the importance of being yourself through lifestyle, beauty and fashion (Gauntlett, 2008). It is a selective range, but I think the content’s weight of satisfying the society’s requirement is heavier than self-confident issues.
‘Cagney & Lacey’. (2014). [image] Available at: http://news.moviefone.com/2014/09/26/80s-tv-shows-movies/ [Accessed 7 Jun. 2015].
Gauntlett, D. (2008). Media, gender and identity. London: Routledge.