Feminism vs. Media

I admit it: I’m a media junky.
I read a laundry list of blogs, watch a bunch of shows, and listen to more than my share of podcasts. I will dive into a full day marathon if I want to get away from homework or other college woes. And, in our media-soaked culture, I bet I am not alone.
Recently, however, when I’ve sat down to read/watch/listen to something, I felt a twinge of hesitation. Often, I found myself asking the difficult question: does this fit with my values? Or, even more shaky: is this feminist?

In Seattle, my favorite radio station plays a program called The Mens’ Room. I’m sure you can guess that its not about breaking down stereotypes. But its entertaining. Women call in all the time to tell them that they love the show. There’s nothing wrong with that, is there?

And on TV right now, the new remake of Nikita starring Maggie Q, brings me loads of entertainment and it has an Asian woman as the lead. But with ads like the one above, I can’t tell whether its just another objectification.

My issue with media sometimes is that its not cut and dry. Though nothing ever is, it frustrates me to enjoy something that I know is offensive or stereotypical. I think myself better for not liking Gossip Girl and being educated on the ways in which women are portrayed, but is that really enough?
My credo these days to get over the issue is this: if you are able to look critically at something, rather than thoughtlessly support everything it projects, then it is fine for you to enjoy it. Thoughts?

Also, if you want to look at more feminist critique of the media, check out Bitch Magazine’s blog (one of my daily reads!).

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