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A Change in the Principles of Feminism

Post-Feminism and Popular Culture, the article written by Angela McRobbie in 2004 for Feminist Media Studies, delved on the societal conditions that feminism has caused to the society, specifically in its general perception regarding the precept and the apparent redirection of feminism that borders on negativity. The said article had cited several factors that caused this societal alteration, most significant of which had been mass media’s role in presenting the feminine gender as an object of desire.

Based on the arguments presented by McRobbie, it would certainly seem that the feminism that was promoted during the past decades had been restructured to form what is now regarded as Post-Feminism, based on the prevailing methodologies employed that can be evidenced in the presentation of women in the society, particularly in the mass media. McRobbie claims that the transition of feminism into post-feminism was instigated during the start of the 1990’s. Although to declare whether this was an intentional endeavor or a result of related events would be highly improbable, she nevertheless stated several factors for its occurrence.

Mass media has been on the forefront of this change in perception. Hence, what was promoted by feminism during the earlier decades as “the extent to which the housewife or ordinary woman was conceived of as the assumed subject of attention for feminism” (McRobbie 256), during the more contemporary times, this was later made to mean as “the new young women confident enough…and they brazenly enjoy their sexuality, without fear of the sexual double standard” (McRobbie 260).

Several other examples of this transformation were witnessed in the billboard advertisement of Claudia Schiffer’s Wonderbra, and the movie, Bridget Jones’ Diary. After reading McRobbie’s article and examining the present depiction of women in the mass media, especially in print and video advertisements, it is clear that there exist a strong prevalence of the situation that McRobbie presents. Firstly, sex has been the main theme, the strongest sales pitch, so to speak, in advertising products of all kinds.

We are witness to this reality in every aspect of our existence, whether in sports related adverts, in movies, and even in the presentation of music videos. Based on these observations, it would suffice to believe that the former more conservative type of feminism had been completely replaced by a sexually-inclined and aggressive form, which she has termed as post-feminism. This was distinctly expressed in her remark, that “we are witness to a hyper-culture of commercial sexuality, one aspect of which is the repudiation of a feminism invoked only to be summarily dismissed” (McRobbie 259).

Conclusion Whatever the communal consequences of the transformation of feminism had caused to the society can be interpreted individually. What remains clear is that through this transformation, the general perception on women had been altered. While it is true that once the feminists struggled to fight for their equal rights, now the movement seems to be solely concerned on how to present women in the most appealing manner; physically, aesthetically, and sexually.

Likewise, based on the magnitude of the influence of mass media, there is no other social entity to place culpability other than their desire to produce captivating advertisements, often times necessitating the need to exploit men’s animalistic desire for sex as their marketing tool. Whether they have been successful in their endeavor can be evidenced by the enormity of women, either skimpy-clad or in absolute nudity, that can be seen in countless advertisements that proliferate in our society. Work Cited McRobbie, A. Post-Feminism and Popular Culture. Feminist Media Studies. 4. 3 (2004): 255-64.

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