The short video “If Women’s Roles In Movies Were Played by Men” emphasizes how women are viewed in the media. In particular, this video focuses on women’s roles in movies and how strange or uncomfortable it would be if such roles were switched. A few significant swaps show scenes where women’s bodies are being overly sexualized and objectified, such as the gawking over of a woman’s legs and the painting of a woman’s body (obsession/objectification of the female figure). It becomes uncomfortable and strange when these women are swapped for men, which also emphasizes double standards. Another significant swap is a scene when, instead of a man asserting physical dominance over a woman, a woman is asserting physical dominance over a man. Such examples show how females are viewed in the media: overly objectified and sexualized. It also points out the hegemony of male dominance over women. This in turn ties to sexism, gender roles in society, and the media’s influence on such. The questions shown at the end of the video pose two both very valuable and interesting questions: “Is seeing men and women like this uncomfortable? Why?” My questions are similar: does it feel strange to see women and men out of their “norm,” and why is there such gender “norms” and expectations in the first place? Why is there such double standards?
The cultural object being studied is an article from the “Sinosphere,” the China blog of The New York Times.
This article explains how children of migrants in China are denied entry to schools in the communities where they live, although Chinese law gives all children the right to attend school. This is a result of China’s “hukou,” or household registration system, which was set up in the 1950s to control the population and causes many schools to reject children who are not locally registered. The author states: “They’re migrants, they’re children, and they’re disabled — a combination that means they are almost entirely overlooked in society.” This echoes Baynton’s article, which notes how disabled people have been historically overlooked in society and struggled to achieve rights because of it. Although lack of education for disabled children in China is a problem, luckily, changes are being made to build new schools especially for those with special needs. However, there is still concern that this may cause prejudice from parents of able-bodied children.
What other changes should be made in China to better accommodate for disabled children? Or should disabled children even receive special accommodation?