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Updated January 27, 2021

Stereotypes in the Mass Media

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Stereotypes in the Mass Media essay
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What is Stereotyping being when someone makes assumptions based purely on the individual’s race, ethnic, and gender they become generalized based on limited and inaccurate information from sources as television, radio, and social media. I believe that we feel the need to categorize and label ethnic groups so that we easily identify a certain minority. If we generalize people into certain groups, we automatically can assume that all people from that group are the same and it makes us feel like we are in a superior ethnic group. Television news and the media can reinforce negative stereotypes especially of minorities. TV news and broadcast have been known to associate crime with minority groups directly or indirectly.

A minority group whose members are perceived to achieve higher degree of success than the population average. Perception of the Asian demographic smart, wealthy, docile, awkward, and submissive. After 9/11, the increase of the representation of Arabs and Muslims as terrorists had increased substantially. Americans and citizens around the world began creating an “Arab-phobic” and “Muslims-phobic” society because of the representation of Arabs and Muslims in the media as violent individuals. Ridicule one of the four staged of ridicule exposed in TV stereotypes groups such as “Muslims as terrorists” they start labeling cultures do to what has been presented on television.

American media perpetuates two stereotypes of African Americans are a threat to society as expressed in violent images and criminality. African Americans are a burden to society as expresses in “Anti-black effect” and illusions of “no more discrimination” in America. The consequences of closely associating crime with race creates problems for African Americans as well as for non-blacks. Another example of racial stereotyping in sitcoms from “I love Lucy”. In the 1950’s, shows as, “I love Lucy”, showed idyllic family life and excluded families of color which during that time were fighting for more equal rights. The Cosby Show in the 1980’s showed African-Americans in positive light, but ABC did not accept the show because of the fact it showed an intact, successful black family.

In the media, Latinos are always given a negative portrayal. They are shown as unintelligent and uneducated criminals who are illegal immigrants. For example, it is proven with many movies that the top roles Latinos or Hispanics are given in film are maids, gang members, criminals, and gardeners. This group has been portrayed in all kinds of roles. Respect has been positively being shown in lots of ways that counter stereotypical. As the majority race, whites dominate media and set the standard which other races may not reach. Media is used to further racial stereotypes and confirm “whiteness” in society. Approximately, 59% of all TV commercials contain an all-white cast, while 29% contain an all-black cast, and only 3% are multiracial.

Non-recognitions stage when you do not see the group you know because when you see that kind of depiction, you think it is unusual or unique. Example you do not see over 40 women on television or in the movies, or Asian American women as lead character in movies. In Depicting Women as Sex Objects in Television Advertising, Professor Lavine examines the correlation between sexualized TV advertisements of women and the effect it has on body dissatisfaction among women viewers. As expected, the “results revealed that women exposed to nonsexist ads”.

There are harmful effects to gender stereotyping women as sexual objects in advertisements. Increased body satisfaction caused through sexist ads can lead to depression and low self-esteem among women. A distorted body image may lead to chronic dieting and more drastically, eating disorders Media is very powerful in shaping self-concepts of women. In the gender similarities Hypothesis, Professor Hyde from the University of Wisconsin Madison reviews 46 different meta-analysis to evaluate psychological gender differences. Contrary to popular belief, her findings suggest that men and women are more similar than not on most psychological variables.

The mass media, particularly advertisements, highlights the proclaimed gender differences between men and women however her research explains the invalidity of these claims. Her results prove there is no scientific justification for gender stereotypes although affirming the baselessness of gender stereotypes in media. A study from article Media’s Growing Sexualization of Women by Rick Nauert, Using Rolling Stone covers from 1967 to 2009, the study concluded 44% of the women on the covers were sexualized in the 1960’s and 83% were sexualized objects exists and has grown tremendously in recent years, Advertisements emphasize the importance of physical appearance as mentioned. Gender stereotypes are created by society and perpetuated though mass media such as commercials.

Lastly, many of the effects of stereotyping on TV is that people learn from what they see on TV. If racial stereotypes are reinforced on TV, the public will begin to think that those stereotypes stand for all a group. Characters in dramas or on reality shows will say things that are no socially acceptable and people begin to form their own bias on different ethnic groups based on hat they see on TV and will utilize it to prejudice. Lack of intimate relationships between races in media reveal that different races are not fully tolerant of each other. The major concern to me is the effects on children.

Children often tell the truth, especially when it comes to racial bias and stereotypes. What the media teaches children about race could stick with them for the rest of their lives, into adulthood, which can further negative stereotypes in the future. Some of the things we could do to prevent it from happening to our children. Do not let TV shows or news influence and blur your opinion about different races. Recognize that stereotypes of race do not apply to all and everybody should be treated equally regardless of race.

In conclusion, the existence and consequences of racial, ethnic, and gender stereotyping in the mass media are still occurring. The inter-reality comparison of different “groups” such as blacks are overrepresented as the criminals or athletes. Whites are overrepresented as officers and victims. Latinos are underrepresented as perpetrators. Including the television explaining news misrepresentation cultures. Numerous times we fall under this category and commit the same mistake we try to describe some phenomenon; you tend to blame ethnic groups you are not part of as the source of the problem. Stages of portrayal when looking at groups across entertainment spectrum and seeing where they fall such as non-recognition, ridicule, regulation, and respect. The media mass is a powerful tool utilized to manipulate and persuade the public with commercials, movies, news, and TV shows.

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Stereotypes in the Mass Media. (2021, Jan 27). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/stereotypes-in-the-mass-media/

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