Over the past five weeks this course has enabled me to compare fact from fiction in the media and determine my own judgement towards the stories that influence our culture. Several of the stories I have encountered did confirm my beliefs, but I was unaware of the boundaries that have been pushed within certain platforms, such as, sexual advertising.
Sex sells! As Marina and the Diamond Song states “Nothing is provocative anymore even for kids, No room for imagining, ‘Cause everyone’s seen everything” and that’s exactly right. Take the music industry for example, when it comes to music videos artists do not shy away from sexual connotations; I mean “Blurred Lines”, come on people that was practically a porno, but throw some music into it and its “creative thinking”. But I must admit there isn’t much difference between “art” and “pornography”.
Take Édouard Manet’s, 1863 painting, Olympia, for example. The young woman depicted in the painting resembles a 16 to 17 year old, but the painting wasn’t known as “provocative” because it depicted a young woman naked. It was the painting style that caused controversy, not the subject matter.
Today, when it comes to the media two words that clash are “children” and “sexualisation”. Joanna Faulkner states, “The suggested danger is that sexual or proto-sexual imagery and signification viewed by children can lead to their ‘premature sexualisation”. From a young age, girls especially are becoming bombarded with images that depict the “perfect” female, take Barbie, for example, her unrealistic slim shape, large breasts, long flowing blonde hair and a face covered in make-up doesn’t really scream “acceptance” or “individualism” instead creating a false depiction of women within society. But BCM110 has shown me that our society is influenced by such control and manipulation.
Unfortunately our world revolves around sexualisation. We cannot prevent children’s exposure to sexual images, but we can stop them from being the sexualised image.
Through BCM110 I can now understand the objective of the media and their control of censored items which has made me re-evaluate the way I consume media platforms, and look beyond the screen.
Faulkner, J, 2010, ‘The Commodification and Sexualisation of Children in the Media and Popular Culture, The Innocence Festish, no. 135, pp. 106-117.