Week 2 - Journal Reflection

This week was very enlightening and eye-opening about the lack of equality and equity in certain countries between males and females. The differences between Sex and Gender were also very interesting and the way people perceive these ideas to be. The video shown makes you realise how females can be so more vulnerable even before they are born. The cultural differences in difference societies and countries was also very diverse and I look forward to learning more on how all these problems are being addressed.


Week 3

Women's Bodies

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This week was an interesting one a
and of particular interest to me. I find it very interesting the way the women's bodies have evolved over time. Especially the way the media portray what to be beautiful and what to be 'healthy'. In western society, the ideal body has slowly shifted towards that of a healthy looking and curvaceous figure to more of the 'skinny' model size zero appearance. Today there is a constant battle for perfection. Everyone is trying to improve their image to increase their social status. As the stereotype is the blonde skinny and beautiful girls are the most popular. Therefore this is the look most females are going for these days. No o
ne is happy with their appearance and they're constantly trying new ways to get 'skinnier' by trying fad diets, weight loss pills, and a whole
other range or unorthodox meth
ods which don't work.

The reason so many do this is what confuses me. Social status is one, to fit into desired clothes, is another, and appealing to the opposite sex sometimes a factor. Contradictory thing is that the majority of men prefer a more natural and healthy Mila Kunis look as
opposed to a fake malnourished Kate Moss look.

Also interesting how this is the desired look in western culture, however in Africa Women of a more voluptuous
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appearance are more desired. People of over weight nature perceive to be more well off, successful and healthy to their skinnier counterparts.

So who's to blame for this warped percept
ion in western culture? Well I blame the media. The media dictate to the public to what is desired and what is attractive. Are the public stupid for being so naive they believe what ever they see on TV? Maybe so, but it doesn't change the fact that the social media control all the power to how the women's bodies are supposed to look. And don't even get me started on women's day magazines. These do nothing but warp perceptions and also entertain people who live such boring lives that how celebrities look at the beach is so important. Reflection/Rant over :)

Week 4 Reflection -

This week was mainly about the fashion industry and how it affects women's perception on body image. The fashion industry usually dictates what is popular at a time and what is not. Therefore the majority of women will then follow this to fit in to whatever is fashionable at the time. The models used to display these clothes are usually underweight and the look will be unrealistic for most to achieve. The average model size will usually be significantly under the average size of women. This can lead to body image dissatisfaction, eating disorders, and high internalisation in women. Which can also cause them to self assess themselves and try fit the mould of whatever is popular at the time. A lot of fashion models will also have had cosmetic surgery as well to get what is viewed as the perfect look. This can then encourage women to follow by getting breast implants, botox etc to look like celebrities. All these things can have a severe mental impact on an individual making them constantly assess their bodies and try to change it to what society sees as ideal. Exposure to media images of unrealistic thin models has a negative affect of one's self esteem and body satisfaction. In the media, women who have the ideal thin body and are attractive are perceived to be happier and more successful too. As a result, if people follow what they see in the media then they will obviously want to look like that to be popular, happy, and successful.

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Week 5 Reflection

Throughout this week we discussed how Women are portrayed through the media, the entertainment and music industry, and pornography. The way in which women are portrayed can certainly come off as offensive to a vast majority of females. In certain genre's of music women are commonly referred to as 'bitches' 'sluts' and 'hoe's'. This definitely can effect the way that society portrays women. Especially the Generation X and Y will be affected by this as they see these stars to be role models. Young people will mimic what these people do in order to fit into their social groups and to be popular. It is not often thought of as 'cool' to act like a gentlemen and be respectful towards women. This also comes from the power balance as Males want to have power and that means being in control. Attractive women are quite often seen to be with powerful and successful figures. Therefore men try to gain the power balance in order to be more attractive to women.
We also discussed body image with women. There are so many eating disorders and plastic surgery operations being done to try attain 'perfection' Perfection is usually seen as what is popular in the latest magazines at the time. So whoever follows the entertainment industry and reads the magazines will be a slave to the media and basically a puppet of social advertising. This is also crossing over to the male gender especially in the 'meterosexuals' Men are also becoming more conscious about their appearances with constant grooming, tanning, and hours at the gym to get the look they think women want. So it seems everyone is a slave to the media and we are just robots waiting for them to give us a new set of instructions. I think everyone should just do whatever makes them happy and not be so concerned with social status and image. Because at the end of the day, someone that tries to hard isn't attractive either.

Week 6 Reflection

This week was about Women in the workforce. This week really showed how disadvantaged women were in the workforce in terms of pay, superannuation, and pension. As a lot of women won't work full time while raising children etc, they will not accumulate enough super annuation to support themselves once retired. If their partner passes as well this can be very difficult. The lecture showed how much less women get payed in the workforce and how it is harder for women to secure a full time job and also to move up in the ranks. Women also usually receive less respect in the work place as they are seen as less competent to males. For single mothers this is even harder as it is harder for them to acquire a job as they are seen as a liability and they are also judged for being single mums. Shifts in maternity leave and increases of baby bonuses are a step in the right direction. However they are not a sole solution to the problem. In a lot of areas women are still getting payed a less average salary to men. And there is still discrimination that occurs in the workplace. Working mothers are also struggling more so work places need to be more accomodating for single mothers. such as day care spaces and also places to breastfeed and change nappies etc
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