If you are a parent, this is probably the most important film you can watch with your family all year. Get together tonight (Oct 20), because there is a broadcast premiere of Miss Representation on Oprah’s OWN channel at 9:00pm EDT (local channel finder).
“Miss Representation” is a film AND a call-to-action campaign to empower girls and young women to fight the limiting labels and hypersexualized expectations that mainstream media has pushed onto us, having us believe that these disparaging images are the “normal” way to view women.
This is certain to be a very powerful film and young men and boys need to see it just as much, if not more so, than girls. Young people need to understand that the objectification of women is not ok and why. They need to be shown that the UNachievable depiction of ideal beauty that we see all through media is NOT… achievable and leads to a mountain of societal injustices and dysfunctions.
First there was Jean Kilbourne, who started her crusade a few years back to open our eyes on how advertising depicts women and objectifies them in advertising (as she established the connection between the objectification of women and violence), now Jennifer Siebel Newsom and her brilliant team are bringing us the tools to empower young women to realize their full potential and to create some much needed cultural and societal change.
This is all about giving us the educational tools to create that change. These tools are part of an arsenal media literacy: “Media literacy is a repertoire of competences that enable people to analyze, evaluate, and create messages in a wide variety of media modes, genres, and forms.” We now have the tools. Let’s use them! Among some of these tools, Miss Representation proposes a curriculum that may be purchased by schools, colleges, universities and libraries. Or you may join the campaign in a multitude of ways by hosting a house viewing party, becoming a Miss Rep and, of course, donating.
Watch it. Tape it. DVR it. Discuss it. Share it. This is too important.