In Susan Douglas' "Girls Gone Anti-Feminist", Douglas talks about how women's current self-empowerment and self-esteem are being eroded due to enlightened sexism within the media. Douglas talks about how the media largely promotes equal rights for women, but, at the same time, promotes hyper-sexism. Douglas argues that the media bombards women with the hyper-sexual message and advertisements that take power away from women. For Douglas, women are encouraged to attempt to be lusted after by men and envied by other women for their respective attractiveness. These sorts of messages, however, cause women to only be viewed for their sexuality, rather than other important traits like personality and intelligence. This view, in turn, causes women to have power taken away from them, rather than have power added to their empowerment and self esteem. Because of this, Douglas would argue that women are being treated as second class citizens.
I personally found Douglas' article to be very interesting. I am not sure that I agree with Douglas that the sorts of hyper-sexism messages in the media are reversing the clock and causing women to become second class citizens, but I do believe that these messages should be a potential cause for concern. I did, however, agree with Douglas in that this enlightened sexism is very ironic. It is very ironic to see because the sorts of hyper-sexist messages we see in the media are clearly making a distinction between men and women, and also how men and women should look and behave. I think that this could potentially be a cause for inequality between men and women, as well as men and women's rights, but it is something that should be investigated further.
The question is, do we agree with Douglas? Is this hyper-sexism in the media taking away women's power and affecting their self esteems? What are the consequences of this loss of power for our society and culture? What do women think about these hyper-sexism messages within the media? Is it something that they wish they could change? Are these messages really leading women towards becoming second class citizens? If so, how much of this can be attributed solely to the media?