Medi The Main Means Of Mass Communication Essay

Medi The Main Means Of Mass Communication Essay

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Media refers to “the main means of mass communication” and encompasses such facets as newspaper, literature, magazines, film, advertisements, and now the internet (1). With each form of media comes the ability to reach wider audiences and therefore disseminate information more freely. The influence of mass media is enormous, however, its main form of power comes from its ability to shape societal norms. This has especially been the case with regard to the creation and perpetuation of ideas concerning sexuality, gender identity, and sexual orientation in the post-World War II era. Media coverage has often been detrimental to marginalized groups because of who is controlling the narrative, and due to this the divisions between race, class and sexuality have widened between groups. On the other hand, there is also a very positive aspect of media for those same groups because it has raised awareness of issues of sexuality. In this way, media acts as a double-edged sword in that it can create a further divide between some while bringing others together.
Media, in some instances, provided a means for individuals to finally see a representation of themselves. This was especially important during the 1950’s when lesbian pulp novels became popular because many lesbians thought they were alone in their plight. Although these books were not always written by women or for women, lesbians devoured them in an attempt to understand themselves better. The case of Christine Jorgensen, as explored in an excerpt from “Sex Change and the Popular Press: Historical Notes on Transsexuality in the United States, 1930-1955”, by Joanne Meyerowitz, also allowed public conversation about a topic that was not often discussed. This had the effect of allowing...

... middle of paper ... white men. It is their interests who are ultimately served, so it only makes sense that the media represents this.
It is clear that the media have played a major role in helping to shape gender roles and views of sexuality over time. This influence continues to grow even stronger with the advent of the internet, and while there are many negative aspects of media coverage, it has provided visibility to the issues facing marginalized groups. Specifically, it allows these marginalized groups to gain a sense of normalcy and have a sense of community because they are not alone. As media continues to expand, it is possible for the positive to outweigh the negative. Ironically, the only thing that can help media is media itself. This can be achieved when those behind media represents a wider sample of the population rather than those who work to maintain the status quo.

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