7 Ways Women and Girls Are Stereotyped, Sexualized, and Underrepresented on Screen

New report highlights staggering gender disparities in film and TV—even children’s shows.

It’s no big revelation that women and minority actors have long struggled to land prominent roles in big-budget Hollywood fare. And entertainment and media’s oversexualization of women (even in Olympics coverage) has always been pretty damn bald-faced.

But how about kids’ TV shows, or family movies?

The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media (founded in 2004 by the Oscar-winning actress and United Nations special envoy) has published a new report (PDF) detailing the stereotypes, barriers, and straight-up exploitation that still define how badly women and girls are treated on screen. The study takes a deep dive into prime-time television, as well as children’s programming and family-friendly films. Women are scarcer in prime-time shows and family films, and those films depict “fewer women in prestigious occupational positions,” the study notes. “Females are not only missing from popular media, [but] when they are on screen, they seem to be there merely for decoration.”

Check out some of the stunning stats below:









Image credits: Walt Disney Pictures ; CBS ; HBO ; NBC ; Group W Productions ; 20th Century Fox ; TBS

 

 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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