As many may know, the concept of media is one that covers a variety of fields; one of which you’re probably exposed to at this very minute. Now, listen, this post is not going to be an overload of sociological terms, nor is it going to be a hassle to read. See, this is where you come into the picture. This thing we call the ‘media’ does not act alone. Obviously, there are the media conglomerates who pretty much control what we see and hear, but they wouldn’t have jobs if it weren’t for you. Yes, you!
No matter how hard we resist it, the media waves its wand over our naivety and innocence, into persuading us to believe that we’re not the ‘perfect person’. This is very much contextual, hence your integral role. Now, some of you may be intimidated by the beauty and youth of the models in the recent Vogue magazine, or feel angered towards the portrayal of your race in television shows and films. Obviously, those two examples aren’t particularly the best, but I’m hoping you get my gist. The Media is what, I believe, causes conflict and angst, which inevitably affects women and men of all ages, races and social backgrounds.
Think. Yes, think about the media’s impact on you.
– Did that influential advertisement you were exposed to impact on your buying of a particular brand or label?
– Why did you buy the last thing you bought? It was probably based on taste, but how did you get onto that particular product in the first place? Did somebody suggest it to you? How did they start on the product?
By no means am I scapegoating the media. The media has a great effect on people, too. To be completely honest, I don’t know how I would live without it. But, it is addictive, hence its impact on human beings.
But, we can resist this strong grasp that these media conglomerates hold on us.
Firstly, we can teach the current and next generation of children to accept and love themselves, in order to lower the expectations placed on women to be ‘beautiful’. That’s easier said than done. Now, put yourself in the shoes of a seven-year-old. You soak up pretty much everything you see, especially if it’s on television! Your peers are starting to realise the importance of looks, and at the same time you watch your mother and/or father complain about their weight gain. You’re susceptible to anything, and these people are your primary socialisation agents. You begin to think that it’s necessary to fit into a certain size, to wear a certain brand, and to have your hair a certain way. Artificiality and Superficial elements are put into place, prompting you to always aim higher than you can realistically achieve. End Result? Anorexia, Cosmetic Surgery, Bulimia, Depression, Anxiety, or possibly, you may think that you’re perfectly normal. The society of the future may prize these superficial aspects, causing you to believe that you’re doing more rights than wrongs.
We don’t want that! And, in your heart, you don’t want that either! Do you?
Example 1 – Doves Onslaught Ad.
Please ignore the fact that it’s a Dove ad.
Focus on the message.
Yes, this is a very confronting ad, yet it’s an accurate representation of the constant exposure of the media on our lives. If we, as adults, have problems accepting ourselves aethetically – think of our children’s future!
Like I said, I am not going to bombard you with useless information, and instead, hope that I have ignited a sense of urgency to teach children. When I say ‘teach,’ I mean with support and love. Nobody is perfect, and unfortunately, I have to constantly remind myself of this important fact, too.
The innocence that children hold is essential to their general wellbeing and life as kids!
If childhood ceased to exist, then where’s the fun in living?
Let’s give every child a childhood, and prevent the media, specifically the beauty industry, from corrupting the minds of adults and children alike.