Media and the representation of gender

Authored by: Margaret Gallagher

The Routledge Companion to Media and Gender

Print publication date:  December  2013
Online publication date:  December  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415527699
eBook ISBN: 9780203066911
Adobe ISBN: 9781135076955

10.4324/9780203066911.ch1

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Abstract

“How can the media be changed? How can we free women from the tyranny of media messages limiting their lives to hearth and home?” Media sociologist Gaye Tuchman ends her celebrated essay “The Symbolic Annihilation of Women by the Mass Media” with these two questions (Tuchman 1978: 38). Straightforward, confident, and unambiguous, from today’s vantage point the questions may seem naïve in their formulation. Yet in essence they encapsulate the concerns that continue to drive much feminist media analysis around the world almost four decades later. Despite enormous transformations in national and global media landscapes, and the development of infinitely more sophisticated approaches to media analysis and theorizing, the fundamental issues remain those that preoccupied Tuchman and her colleagues: power, values, representation, and identity.

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