Class, sex and racism in the twenty first century media


It is evitable that class, sex and racist ideals all play a role in 21st century media. Minorities are still underrepresented, women a forced to take on certain roles and the media targets white middle class. According to the article Critical media literacy for the twenty-first century, taking our entertainment seriously; executives and producers claim that the media function is simply to entertain. However this unfortunately is not its only role the media plays. The media teaches and acts as a form of education and this education extends to ideas and notions pertaining to class, sex, ethnicities, etc…   In addition, it promotes other harmful ideas like violence and early sexual onset. The media works to shape and mold our perception and undeniably play a huge in educating the world. Although the media can have a negative effect it also can be beneficial as well. Television shows like extreme makeover and the swan work on improving people and their image. However they give the impression that a little plastic surgery can get you a long way. My personal favorite is the Oprah Winfrey show and I would have to completely disagree with this article. It claims that “ talk shows like Oprah dedicate enormous amounts of airtime transforming guest with the help of hair, make-up and style experts”  ( Leistyna and Alper, 65) Although Oprah does dedicate time to issues of style and beauty, she also devotes  her resources to issues of health, finances, spiritual growth among many other positive issues. I think Oprah and other shows similar to hers are representative of society’s growth and need for positive change. There has also been a move towards more traditional values like marriage and the women’s role. Shows like the bachelor, bachelorette and desperate housewives, and newlyweds encourage customary beliefs.

To some its pure entertainment and to others like myself it’s manipulative and a new form of sexism. The media trying to put the women back in the house and out of the work force.  Interestingly enough there are shows like matcher millionaire who not only push for the traditional marriage; but also communicates to views that women are only interested in millionaire. It conveys that women only interested in marrying a man if he wealthy, which is a terrible message to send to our world.


Additionally, shows like the apprentice have sexist tendencies as well. The following article follows the different seasons of apprentice and explores where the show went sexist. It very interesting and I think you should take the time to read it


The media is responsible for both good and bad influences to our world. While a lot of progresses has been made there exist a new form of sexism and racism within today’s media. These issues are not limited to television and are seen in music as well. Take for exaple the music video by Tina Turner ” whats love got to do with it” which protrays black females in animalistic and hypersexual ways.


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