Monday, January 23, 2012

Sub-text..... How do we know what is affecting us or not?

Gill brings the idea of “textual determinism” to our attention. This term suggests that media’s messages affect people, because they passively take in the information given to them. Gill recognizes that people have different ways of interpreting media, and seek to watch media with different intentions. I think that we should look at the difference if effectiveness from material that is blatantly sexist, and material that has stereotypical gender roles as a sub-textual part of its plot. Media does do much to distort the roles that women play in occupation and relationships, but the effectiveness of influence that this kind of depiction portrays is more dependent on the individual consuming the media, and their interpretation of the media’s content.   
                As with the women reading romance novels in Radway’s piece, these women are reading romance novels with the intention of escape and fantasy. Although their goal is achieved by reading there novels, there seems to be a secondary effect that is carried with consuming this media that is not considered, or intended by the reader to consume. These novels end with the woman being a “passive object of someone else’s attention.” This shows that the intentions of the people consuming media are not necessarily a direct correlate to the consequential effects that the media might have on them.    This is something that I have been realizing more with the way I consume media. I watch these shows and movies with the intent of empowering myself, or getting a laugh without realizing or paying attention to gender roles. It has lead me to question what kind of unsolicited consequences that I have brought upon myself by watching the kinds of shows I do.

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