Charli XCX: The F Word and Me

Charli XCX, a 23-year-old , who has written tracks for the likes of Iggy Azalea and is fast becoming a global pop star in her own right.

It seems like a golden age for female artists, a time when they are finally running the music world – even singers like Beyonce proudly stand in front of a feminist logo. But what is it really like to be a woman caught up in the limelight of the media today?

This film follows Charli across one incredible summer, as she takes her raucous show to festivals like Glastonbury and Lollapalooza. She explores what it is like to be a woman in the music business.She finds out what feminism means in the 21st century.

Here’s part of the documentary where Charli interviews Marina and the Diamonds about life as a female musician today.

Watch the full documentry on BBC Iplayer

Slut Shaming: Gender Inequality Today

Slut shaming is defined as the act of criticising a woman for her real or presumed sexual activity, or for behaving in ways that someone thinks are associated with her real or presumed sexual activity.

We live in a culture that objectifies women.Defining girls and women as “sexualised” merely adds to it. Where the media  portrays most successful women wearing provocative clothing and appearing sexy, but there is an imbalanced proportion of men ever mentioned to be looking “slutty”.

This shows how apparent gender inequality is today. The fact it is accepted that a man can have sexual contact with multiple partners but if a women did this she’s seen as ‘dirty’,’slutty’ and ‘easy’.

Every  woman will have had experience of this whilst growing up. No man has ever been criticised for their sexual behaviour, they only receive praise. Slut shaming has to stop.

In a study of North American English, Stanley (1977, cited by Graddol & Swann, 1989, p. 110) identified 220 words for a sexually promiscuous woman but only 20 for a sexually promiscuous man.

It suggests that we have taken a step back in time when women should be pure,innocent,not heard and to just follow the footsteps of their husband rather than embracing themselves.

It is 2015, not 1950!! It’s not only males that discriminate women in this way its also women themselves. It’s almost seen as a crime. It is any humans’ right to dress and behave in the way that they want and to not let society’s ‘expectations’ stop them.

As social media has grown it has been a catalyst for additional slut shaming. In the YouTube community, users such as Jenna Mourey (aka Jenna Marbles) speak out against “sluts” in their videos. In a video released in December 2012. “Things I don’t understand about girls Part 2: Slut edition”, Mourey mocks women who engage in casual sex as she says;

“A slut is someone that has a lot of casual sex. […] It’s the girl that you’re like, ‘Pyeah [sic], yeah, she’s a slut.’ Yeah, that girl. Those are the group of people that I’m talking about. […] Help the sluts of the world make less bad slutty decisions. […] We need to look out for the sluts of the universe together. Because I think they are just a little lonely and sad.”

There is a significant lack of male slut shaming videos in the media. How is this fair? How is it socially accepted that men can sleep with multiple partners without any judgement? When women who have casual sex are seen as ‘trampy’. This shows the inequality that women still face today in everyday life.

Just because what’s ‘socially accepted’ in society does not mean its actually right and fair. It’s as if nowadays everyone just accepts the way they should think and no-one actually has their own individual mind to question society’s expectations of how women should behave.

Society views today are sickening towards women. Slut shaming has got to the stage  where people blame sexual assaults on the women themselves because of what they are wearing because “they were asking for it”.

An example of this is when a Toronto Police officer told a group of students that they could avoid sexual assault by not dressing like “sluts”. 

As a result of this the “Slut Walk” protest was created.This is a protest march that calls for an end to rape culture.Specifically, participants protest against explaining or excusing rape by referring to any aspect of a woman’s appearance.

There’s no such thing as a slut.So stop pretending there is? ‘Slut’ is a word used to shame,silence and attack women. It is only a real thing to misogynists who use language to hurt women.

Slut-shaming’ is not about shaming ‘sluts’. It’s about misogyny. It’s about shutting women down. It’s about hating women. It’s about silencing. You can be labelled a ‘slut’ regardless of whether or not you have or like sex. Whether you’ve had one partner or fifty, it doesn’t matter.

It needs to stop. Why should any woman be told they are something that they aren’t just down to their own choices or clothes? For some young women, the stigma of “slut” is so hurtful that it leaves their lives in ruins.

In 2015 no woman should ever be ashamed of her decisions and the way she looks. Every woman has the right to feel confident and sexy without getting put down.

So next time you think about calling someone a slut, just stop and think. Every time you do you are dis-empowering women and allowing gender inequality to continue in society today without even realising.

Is Feminism Still Relevant?

Women’s role in society has significantly changed. Now women are equally paid in the work place, allowed to vote and are accepted and able to have successful careers. Everyone is oblivious to how feminism is still present in our everyday lives. Without realising women are still unfairly treated in modern society.

 

We may be able to have the career of our dreams but is the ratio of male to female staff equal?

The overall portrayal  of women in the media exploits their image as being sexual and provocative. This undermines women causing insecurity.

Even religion has a different opinion of a woman’s role. Women vicars or bishops are under represented in the Church of England.

 

Perfect Looks: How the Media Brainwashes Women

It’s very captivating to see celebrities with super smooth and beautiful skin to accompany their perfectly toned bodies. Our societies female role models today are celebrities. Yes that’s right, not inspirational female politicians  or doctors but perfect looking celebrities.

Many of the biggest stars look as though they have been chiselled out of stone, making us envious as we strive to reach that impossible perfect look.

This unrealistic image of female celebrities causes  pressure to intensify for women to look a certain way. This is a clear pointer to feminism in the modern society today. Women’s looks are seen as more important than their opinions, views and actions.

The  celebrity image is unnatural. Female role models such as Beyonce, Demi Lovato and Sarah Jessica Parker are all photo shopped to transform them from their real figures and looks. This superficial look everyone aspires to is not empowering to women at all. It is impossible to achieve.

On every magazine cover, in every photo shoot and on every poster, female role models are photo shopped to look perfect. It is sad to see that the power feminists in our history have strived to gain, the  respect they achieved and the fact they were  being heard are now seeing their movement go into reverse. Women are now seen as pretty objects to look at in the media, to only inspire females with their looks. It is disgraceful.

These perfect celebrities are seen as empowering to other women. Yes the fact that they have a strong role in the media and are not being  ignored is good, but it can be seen as the person is hiding behind who the celebrity really is.

The ‘perfect look’ is seen today as the only way a woman can be happy with herself. The only way to be respected or noticed by men is due to appearance. The media does not realise their impact and influence on women. It is more dis-empowering rather empowering.

A key example of this is 18 year old Instagram model who says her ‘perfect life’ only made her miserable. She says that “A 15-year-old girl that calorie restricts and excessively exercises,  these are not goals.” This shows how the media has caused young women to view their looks and image as the most important aspect in their life rather than their success and actions.

Over the past few years, Essena O’Neill has built up her own social media empire. It all began in high school where she started posting on a blog, YouTube and social media and became consumed in it. She soon became an online sensation, with half a million followers in Instagram and over 250,000 subscribers on YouTube.

She wrote on her blog; “I was severely addicted. I believed how many likes and followers I had correlated to how many people liked me. I didn’t even see it happening, but social media had become my sole identity. I didn’t even know what I was without it.”

She then made the decision to delete her Instagram, blog and YouTube account. As she explains in this video;

Before she officially deleted her account she captioned her Instagram photos with the truth behind them.

“…Stomach sucked in, strategic pose, pushed up boobs,” O’Neill wrote on one of her photos. “I just want younger girls to know this isn’t candid life, or cool or inspirational. It’s contrived perfection made to get attention.”

Her decision has created awareness for young women that what appears real isn’t always the truth. Along with her captions she wrote, “How deeply depressing. Having a toned body is not all we as human beings are capable of.” This captures the failure of the female gender within recent days. The media  portrays females to be seen as only capable to be attractive rather than being powerful and successful by their own actions.

It’s about time awareness of the media’s misrepresentation should be revealed. The media has a strong influence on the female gender but also the male gender on how they view women. Why can’t more women with an actual inspirational career or story be present in the media rather focusing on looks? It has to stop.

Emma Watson: Inspirational Woman of the Moment

The media’s representation of women is horrendous. It always portrays weaknesses or criticises women’s looks. Women are seen as objects not humans in the media world.This is the main gender inequality issue that every woman combats today.

speakeasy.com
speakeasy.com

I can’t believe how little women are presented as being empowered or shown to have importance in the media. It is not right. Its about time women stand up for equality to stop this gender battle . Allowing whatever gender you are to not impact every aspect of life!

Unlike any other female celebrity who would shy away from confronting women’s rights, Emma Watson has made a stand. She has just been given a major new role.It’s nothing to do with her acting career. After completing her degree at Brown University, the actress has been appointed UN Women Goodwill Ambassador.

She states “Women’s rights are something so inextricably linked with who I am, so deeply personal and rooted in my life, that I can’t imagine an opportunity more exciting.”

She launched the HeForShe campaign in September 2014, a campaign which is aimed at motivating men and boys to push for gender equality.

Although this is a strong femimist campaign which empowers all women, it still has hints of gender equality even within in it. Yes focusing towards men to help make them aware of gender equality and how they can combat it. However the fact that its aimed to help defeat gender inequality, still enforces the ideolgie that men are powerful and women always need them to become successful.

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