Newspapers and Gender

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Of course in conflicted societies it would be inducible to observe that these idealisms are anything more than romanticised expectations; as societal disruptions affect everybody. Part of the problem in viewing these stereotypes may arise from female’s relatively low visibility in comparison with an overwhelming male visibility. Concomitantly with photographic representation, between 1967 and 1974, women only held 5.7% of the total 1,500 seats at Ireland’s parliamentary level. Although this is not representative of Northern Ireland’s figures it is comparable that both countries share similar cultural rites. Despite the lack of female politicians it would be unfair to view all women with indifference to government policies. For example, in July 1970 it was women, not men, who organized themselves into a civil rights march. This is significant for both genders as to presume an expected role, is not synonymous with historicity. The exception to the rule of invisible female politicians, is Bernadette Devlin who contentiously appears almost weekly within The Irish Times. However, her image may be promoted as a form of mockery, as The Irish Times presents a triglyph of three iconographies; the pious, the desirable, and the repulsive. The first image of the pious shown on February 7th (Figure. 3) devises Devlin within an ideal, specifically catholic, likeness as the typical mother; the Virgin Mary. It does so by placing Devlin as a passive spectator to the event; the placement of the photograph looking down on the protestors as a mother; and the look of worry within her eyes for the citizens she has aided in ‘procreating’ an era of civil rights activism. This is a pleasant representation, but it is also unfairly subjective. It rei... ... middle of paper ... ...e, nothing but a record of an un-manifested self. Overall, through researching The Irish Times, it is apparent that a photograph always remains indefinite as a source for evidence, as it undergoes a complex process of selection, display and manipulation. There is no-one to blame but ourselves for allowing an unfair representation of gendered warfare to be offered as newsworthy and it can only be advised that newspapers from now on be treated sceptically for imposition of a prejudiced agenda. As the photograph has identified people who are like ‘us’ or not; it must always be taken that newspaper photography is coerced in a system of advocated control. The network of newspaper photography will remain as a defamatory source until resolved to become more considerate of the illustration of people as themselves, and not as mechanisms to invoke dogmatic libertarianism.

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