The controversial topic I selected was sexism, which was chosen because I believe it is prevalent in numerous social issues, and potentially affects half of the human race. The information I after reviewing the Mediawatch site is that sexism is both direct and indirect, and it can be seen in nearly all aspects of society, including politics, the entertainment industry, business, and within interpersonal relationships. Thus, it is relevant in all aspects of culture.
Examples of sexism in all of these social aspects were eye-opening, particularly in regard to how pervasive sexism can be. A recurring theme throughout many of the articles was that sexism was often intrinsically linked to perceptions of female sexuality. Additionally, not all articles appeared to be in agreement over what constituted empowering sexuality, as opposed to oppressive identification of sexuality. One example was in an article discussing the Sports Illustrated swimsuit calendar. On one hand, the featured model is in an empowered position; on the other hand, she is objectified for a male audience. This raises the question of whether sexuality depends on the gender of the audience, as well as the role that beauty and sex appeal in feminine identity. Some would argue that being in control of one’s own sexuality is indeed empowering, while others might claim that it is inherently subjugating oneself to the opinions of another. Ultimately, the range in articles reveal how sexism is not only pervasive throughout society, but also can be an extremely complex question to consider.
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