Through the Eyes of the Media
Perception is a powerful thing, sometimes destructive. How it is used is up to its beholder, and when used with a negative connotation, specifically towards a highly valued concept, it becomes detrimental. Today, especially with the control of the media and the easiness with which different ideas can be spread through it with, advocacy towards feminism is one of the many recipients of its strength. The way feminism is perceived and spread to different networking platforms as often triumphs what it actually is, and the beliefs that it actually supports.
In the electronic age in which we live, anything can be spread around with the click of a button. Soon, more and more people begin to believe what they see on their screens. Before anyone realizes what is happening, a new cultural norm has been created as a result of Facebook shares and Instagram likes. Thus is born one of many new perceptions.
One such conception is directed towards the capability of feminists and the kinds of lives they can lead. Women (and men) who are feminists are independent and strong. Those words are not synonyms for lonely and arrogant. Yet outspoken feminism advocates’ judgments are still questioned when the public finds out (through usage of different mediums of networking) that these women are married or mothers. Having a family does not mean that a woman’s individualism is compromised. It means that she has someone to share it with, and that it can be spread. It means that she found people who motivate her and everything she stands for, and it is something that should be supported, not discouraged.
Because of the connection of the word feminism to femininity, feminism is portrayed as an unfair concept that supports the rights of women and demeans men. Through the fluid and easily accessible platform that different networks of media offer, many speculations such as this one are easily spread and shared. Ironically, the belief that women deserve equal treatment as men is nowhere near as noticed on networking arenas as the reference to the entire history of the human race as mankind. This contradiction exists because people tend to overlook the things that do not seem different. The neglection of women and their capabilities is one of these things, but the reinforcement of that power raises red flags. Despite commonly spread belief, feminism is not an excuse to blame one gender for victimizing the other, but instead, promotes equality for every human being. The reason that the concept itself is so widely known is because many women feel they need it in order to be taken seriously. If its presence is such a big nuisance, then maybe those who see feminism as such should be advocating for equal treatment so it won’t be needed.
What is put on the media immediately is handed the power to convince us that what it says is correct. But, as established, perception is powerful, and that includes the perception of the media’s consumers. We are just as formidable as the it, and whether or not we choose to believe what we see determines its power.
By Sahana, Grade 9