Quantcast
Connect with us

Sundance film takes aim at US gender inequality

Published

on

PARK CITY, Utah — A documentary at this year’s Sundance film festival takes aim at gender inequality in the United States and the distorted image of women in the media.

“Miss Representation,” the directorial debut of actress Jennifer Siebel Newsom, peers through the glass ceiling with a wide range of women, including political and media figures who would seem to have broken through it.

ADVERTISEMENT

The film is in competition at the Sundance independent film festival here in the US state of Utah, with prizes to be announced later on Saturday.

It features dozens of interviews with American women from all walks of life — including Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice — who discuss the gender barriers they have faced and ways to lift them.

“Some of them were actually frightened to say something, they were afraid of losing their job. That shows this fear that we have in America, the fear we women have of speaking our mind,” Newsom told AFP.

“Hopefully I’m encouraging other women and men to have a voice and stand up for women’s rights, which are human rights,” she added.

The film includes several statistics showing that gender inequality is worse in the United States than in much of the rest of the world.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We’re 90th in the world in terms of women in national legislatures, ranked behind Rwanda, Haiti, Cuba, Afghanistan and Iraq,” Newsom says.

“It’s humiliating. We should be learning from them. We think we’re so great, but we’re not,” says the actress, who is married to Gavin Newsom, the former mayor of San Francisco and now lieutenant governor of California.

Women continue to make more than 20 percent less than men, an income gap that has changed little in recent years, according to the Washington-based Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

ADVERTISEMENT

Newsom says the problem is rooted in “capitalism taken to an extreme, without an element of public service and without an element of including women. It’s also a little bit of greed.”

She singles out the media for flooding magazine covers and television screens with images that she says reduce women to their outward appearance and bombard the audience with unrealistic standards of beauty.

ADVERTISEMENT

A recent study carried out by the Annenberg School for Communication and the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in the Media found that male characters outnumber female characters by three to one in top-grossing American films.

The study found that women tend to play either traditional or hypersexual characters, that they were five times as likely as men to wear revealing clothing and three times as likely to be shown with a thin figure.

In animated films, women are frequently shown with waistlines that would be too thin to contain any internal organs, according to another study by the Annenberg school, part of the University of Southern California.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Unfortunately, our media have been exported all around the world. We need to take responsibility and accountability for all the damage we cause… because we are not making the world a better place,” Newsom said.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump calls Minneapolis protesters ‘thugs’ — and threatens military action

Published

on

President Donald Trump blasted protesters in Minnesota outraged over the killing of George Floyd.

“ I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis,” Trump tweeted after midnight.

“A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right,” he wrote, even though the National Guard was already deployed.

“ These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts,” he threatened.

Continue Reading

Latest Headlines

A world redrawn: Pop can keep us together, says star DJ David Guetta

Published

on

New York (AFP) - Pandemic confinement has electronic dance music titan David Guetta looking inward, and he said he's emerging "extremely inspired" ahead of a New York benefit set for this weekend.A key EDM architect who's heavily influenced the pop of recent decades, the 52-year-old Grammy-winning French DJ will perform a livestreamed set from New York for COVID-19 relief, starting Saturday after the nightly clap for health workers.The exact location remains secret.But Guetta told AFP he's remixing a version of the famed "Empire State of Mind" hit, from rapper Jay-Z and Alicia Keys, for the sh... (more…)

Continue Reading
 

Latest Headlines

J.K. Rowling and ‘The Ickabog’: What to know about the new, not-‘Harry Potter’-story that kids are invited to illustrate

Published

on

The publication of a new J.K. Rowling story has often been accompanied by lines of robed children, parents, and wizard wannabes waiting outside bookshops to pluck the first volumes from the piles at the stroke of midnight.That won’t be happening, or not at least until late fall, for “The Ickabog,” a children’s story that the “Harry Potter” author began releasing free online Tuesday to entertain kids in lockdown. Her plan is to continue to publish “a chapter (or two, or three) every weekday” until July 10.“I think ‘The Ickabog’ lends itself well to serialisation because it was written as a read... (more…)

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image