If you live or work in London you simply cannot help but be confronted by posters adorning the sides of all TFL buses depicting three beautiful teenage lingerie models. The poster is frankly OTT. Since when did it become acceptable to have larger than life posters of provocative and scantily clad women moving up and down every street in London? Where did the mystery go?
As it has become acceptable for such images to be viewed everywhere by everyone - whether you want to see them or not - so has it become acceptable to push back the boundaries of what is no longer acceptable. Today’s model on a bus means tomorrow’s porn becomes that much harder.
The increasing sexualisation and objectification of young girls and women in the media is becoming a huge issue and has become markedly worse over the last few years and it appears to be our teenagers who are the most concerned and confused.
We live in a culture whereby our visual and auditory senses are constantly bombarded with images and messages; downloaded into our brain with no filter for objective analysis or warning before the ‘message’ is received.
The breakdown of a strong family culture which was once prevalent within society and provided the moral home spun boundaries teenagers could bounce off, has for many disappeared.
Take a comment recently made to me by a sixteen year old boy;
“…the thing is you see girls everywhere with no clothes on- they are all over the telly and papers and the films, it’s just everywhere, so when you go out with a girl you feel confused about things because does she expect sex and stuff because all the girls you see on the telly and things do, how are we supposed to regard and treat girls when they just get them out all the time”.
OK, there is a huge amount of discussion to be had around his comment and this is an issue way too big for one blog, but I have my own point to make here.
At least 50% of journalists are women. Surely they can see how over the last three to four years things have escalated and how misogynistic the tone of the media has become?
Katie Price - I will admit courts the media - but so do many men. Was it acceptable for a newspaper to put a picture of Myra Hindley's head on a photograph of her body?
And do people really think it’s good to see a picture of a four year old little girl in Grazia magazine wearing high heels and Lipstick?
Female journalists and picture editors - what are you doing?
The answer is probably writing about women’s literature and female issues which don’t fundamentally address the way women are viewed and treated within society.
If the female journalists stopped writing about how awful it is that there are so few women at the top of business and instead focused on the fact that maybe, just maybe, it is the image that business has of women which is perpetrated by women in the media, and then wrote message after message to challenged those perceptions, then it may be possible things could begin to change.
I have applied for a ten minute rule Bill to highlight some of the issues I have raised in this blog.
And no, I haven’t turned into a feminist overnight - heaven forbid! This is not about wearing a feminist hair shirt. It’s about knowing the difference between what is right and wrong and trying to do something about it.