Title

Destructive Representations of Gender Roles as Portrayed in Film

Presenter Information

Patrick Clark

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC 137A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

Gender roles and character portrayals of teenage girls in film have been an unrealistic representation of conventional youth behavior throughout the years. From “Clueless” in 1995, to “Mean Girls” in 2006, these films have portrayed teenage girls as exactly that, clueless and mean. The characters in these selected films lead unrealistic lives while acting in abnormal fashions. They are often self entitled, beautiful, and wealthy, while remaining “independent”, thus the characters and their lives seem appealing to their target audience. While these films showcase characters in self-destructive behaviors, the films emerge as comedies, making light of bullying, drug-use, and sexual activities. This diagnostic research study will evaluate how gender roles and character portrayals in film have been shaping what girls deem as acceptable behavior, and the emerging preconceived notions because of these portrayals. The evaluation will be conducted through the viewing and studying of the selected films, “Sixteen Candles”, “Clueless”, and “Mean Girls”. Included will be a cross analysis of these films with secondary research focusing on the psychology of influential behavior and the effect it has on teenage girls.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Melissa Johnson

Additional Mentoring Department

Communication

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May 17th, 3:40 PM May 17th, 4:00 PM

Destructive Representations of Gender Roles as Portrayed in Film

SURC 137A

Gender roles and character portrayals of teenage girls in film have been an unrealistic representation of conventional youth behavior throughout the years. From “Clueless” in 1995, to “Mean Girls” in 2006, these films have portrayed teenage girls as exactly that, clueless and mean. The characters in these selected films lead unrealistic lives while acting in abnormal fashions. They are often self entitled, beautiful, and wealthy, while remaining “independent”, thus the characters and their lives seem appealing to their target audience. While these films showcase characters in self-destructive behaviors, the films emerge as comedies, making light of bullying, drug-use, and sexual activities. This diagnostic research study will evaluate how gender roles and character portrayals in film have been shaping what girls deem as acceptable behavior, and the emerging preconceived notions because of these portrayals. The evaluation will be conducted through the viewing and studying of the selected films, “Sixteen Candles”, “Clueless”, and “Mean Girls”. Included will be a cross analysis of these films with secondary research focusing on the psychology of influential behavior and the effect it has on teenage girls.