Women are Overly Sexualized in the Media: Pro

Giodona Campbell, Staff Writer

You’re standing in line for checkout at the grocery store and turn to your right to find the latest magazines. Vogue, Seventeen, and others such as these stare back at you. On of the front cover of each, a female celebrity poses in a trendy bodysuit showing off her curves.Sound familiar?

Women are often displayed as sex symbols and objects for simply embracing their bodies. Posing on the cover of a magazine in a bodysuit or swimsuit should not hinder the belief in body positivity for women, be they old or young. Just because a woman looks good on the cover of a magazine should not mean that other women should lack motivation or force other women to feel insecure about their body. However, it does. This is because of oversexualization in mass media.

This issue of oversexualization, which is the excessive demonstration of sexual demeanor, forces society to see women in a manner that restricts self-expression: a right that, last time I checked, everyone had. Oversexualization brings to light several issues, including the double standard of how male sexual conquest is shrugged off or even embraced, yet women are not allowed the same behavior. It is okay to parade them around on the covers of magazines and in other forms of media; but when it comes to sex, women are held to a different standard or risk being shamed and seen as less competent than their male counterparts.

The oversexualization in the media also causes more serious issues, such as furthering the problem of rape culture in the country. It puts limits on how women can act and not live in fear. The clichéd expectation that women should be “submissive” or that “catcalling” is to be expected and simply brushed off are prime examples of this rape culture. All too often we avoid the discussion; but by not talking about it we only exacerbate an issue that degrades and terrorizes every woman, making them more concerned about their safety and people’s questioning their actions.

Another issue related to oversexualization of women is that our society is too caught up in problematic thinking around what can be called a sexual economy which is essentially the belief that “sex sells.” This is a female issue as it affects the mindset of younger girls on the importance of their true beauty. Instead of embracing who they are, they focus on trying to be “sexy” to satisfy other people. According to a research article by Antonio Gomez on teen girls and “sexting,” “These experiences [bad examples of propaganda, social media, and TV shows on women] can shape a woman’s gender construction and self-expectations of sexuality as early as 12 years old.”
The norm of the misrepresentation of females in media, especially in advertisements and television, needs to come to a halt. Women need more empowerment to overcome low self-esteem, and oversexualization prevents that. To all men, put yourself in a woman’s shoes. You would be exhausted to always look over your shoulder for trivial actions that you do to express yourself or even to be afraid to embrace yourself in the world. It is time to let women stop looking over their shoulders.