Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Gender Codes in SELF Magazine Essay -- Sex Gender American Culture

An Ideal SELF Woman? Americans live in culture full of numerous gender codes. Gender codes are imaginary rules of how males and females should live and are created within America by the media such as TV shows, movies, billboards, magazines, and advertisements. In "Gender Codes in the American Culture", Jack Solomon and Sonia Maasik believe that "Gender codes are socially, not naturally, constructed, and usually reflect cultural values rather than natural facts" (476). This supports that the media creates gender codes because it is the main method in which cultural values are presented. They present what is accepted to be masculine and feminine in America at the time, and society follows these generalizations of what it means to be a man and a woman, thus creating gender codes. A lifestyle magazine is an example of a one type of media that creates gender codes. It is easy for lifestyle magazines create gender roles because they idealize a certain type of man or woman because they address the aspects of everyday life in their articles, advertisements, and features. They show their readers how the ideal man or woman lives their life. SELF is one lifestyle magazine that does just that. SELF is a lifestyle magazine for women between the ages of 20 to 50 years of age and it focuses on giving their readers information and pointers of how to live a supposedly well-rounded life. SELF creates the feminine ideal that a woman be competent in every aspect of her life. According to SELF, being competent in every aspects of a woman ' s life includes being health conscious, eating right, having scheduled weekly workouts whether at home or in the gym, keeping yourself well groomed, dressing fashionably, being independent, having healthy r... ...er life, and if she isn't, then she should be working to fix that in order to achieve this ideal status. This ideal woman creates a gender code for SELF readers. Works Cited Blum, Deborah. "The Gender Blur: Where Does Biology End and Society Take Over?" Signs Of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers. 4th edition. Ed. Sonia Maasik, and Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford/ St. Martin's, 2003.495- 501. Maasik, Sonia, and Jack Solomon. "We've Come a Long Way, Maybe: Gender Codes in American Culture." Signs Of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers. 4th edition. Ed. Sonia Maasik, and Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford/ St. Martin's, 2003.475-483. Wolf, Naomi. "The Beauty Myth." Signs Of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers. 4th edition. Ed. Sonia Maasik, and Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford/ St. Martin's, 2003.515-524.

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