Just another blogs.elsweb.org weblog

In contemplating yesterday’s class discussion on gender roles in film, and in our culture, I thought about the many ways in which the media uses gender roles to cause a certain type of reaction from their audience. While I still believe that women aggressors in film are often portrayed as “pathetic,” I found that film, and television in particular uses gender reversal as a sort of comic effect.
Think of most of the popular television sitcoms from the last decade. Many of them use the role of the “strong woman” as a punch line. “Everybody Loves Raymond” is one of my all time favorites but much of the comic effect comes from the central female character (Deborah) calling her husband an “idiot,” or “moron.” This is not a new phenomenon either. As we saw in “The Glass Key,” Veronica Lake’s character punches Alan Ladd in the face upon their first meeting. In watching this with the rest of the class, our response was all that of laughter. It’s a little bit odd if you think about it. What would our reaction had been if Alan Ladd went up and punched Veronica Lake…We would have all be horrified and disgusted.
This topic is very interesting, and extremely complicated when you think about all of the different ways in which gender roles are used to evoke a specific response from people. It’s almost as if, subconsciously we are all being brainwashed.

July 10th, 2007 at 9:44 am