In "Where the girls are: Growing Up Female With the Mass Media," Susan Douglas analyses the effects of mass media on women of the nineteen fifties, and more importantly on the teenage girls of the baby boom era. Douglas explains why women have been torn in conflicting directions and are still struggling today to identify themselves and their roles. Douglas recounts and dissects the ambiguous messages imprinted on the feminine psyche via the media. Douglas maintains that feminism is a direct result of the realization that mass media is a deliberate and calculated aggression against women. While the media seemingly begins to acknowledge the power of women, it purposely sets out to redefine women and the qualities by which they should define themselves. The contradictory messages received by women leave women not only in a love/hate relationship with the media, but also in a love/hate relationship with themselves.
As early as the nineteen fifties women were identified and targeted as a market. In a consumer culture the most important things are consumers. Advertisers convinced homemakers that in order to be a “good” wife and mother you must have their products and appliances to keep a clean and perfect home. The irony of this ploy is that consumers must have money to buy, and so trying to improve their quality as homemakers, off into the workforce women went. This paradox left women ...
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