Brain vs. world

Black women’s progress collides with media stereotypes


Black women are making enormous leaps in mass media, but yet they aren’t quite equal. I remember as a child watching Disney princesses. My favorite, was jasmine, she was not my favorite because her story was the best or she had the best hair, even as a child I recognized that she was different than the rest and that is the very reason she was my favorite. My aunt, being from India had a great impact on my young mind, one of the greatest lessons I learned: although different, everyone is equal. Even as a child I grasped diversity with not only curiosity but an open heart. Why can’t media do the same? It wasn’t till the princess and the frog came out in 2009, Disney fans had the chance to have an African American Princess. Although a giant leap it still isn’t enough, because the movie was riddled with stereotypes against black women.

This article made a strong case for Media stereotypes but it went a little too far to say that those black characters weren’t allowed to be “fully human” as their white counter parts were. It’s not a matter of them being unhuman but instead an overrepresentation of some characteristics, usually stereotypes, and misrepresentation of others. It’s not as if they are cast to act like robots, black characters, especially women, have developed characteristics of true human nature , to want , to need ,to love , to hate,  some are over represented and others not enough. It is a problem seen in media that black characters aren’t essentially emotionally equal but I would take it so far as to say because of this they are stripped of their human title.

The portions in which it talks about the “angry woman” idea needs to be further explained

Can black women not be angry in media without being a stereotype? Does it matter why or at whom they are angry at? Is it only inn stereotypical situations, or over played situations, that this is present or is it present if a character is overall angrier of a character? What makes this angry woman stereotypical? If they deemed it important to bring this stereotype up I also find it important that they go to necessary lengths to explain, just what they mean. Do they think that it is common knowledge that angry black women are stereotypical or is that a stereotype about a stereotype?

This stereotype, is it just a behavior of those who are black. This specific point is brought up in the article. Why can’t media seem to understand that all individuals experience a wide range of emotions and are free to experience them as the next person is, regardless of the race. Why do we associate certain emotions and actions with a certain race? Do they own the trait, can traits even be owned? Are humans so prioritized on being right that we can’t see that everyone fits stereotypes and everyone doesn’t fit others?

“Stereotypes and the Media: A Re-evaluation”

Although I find that this article makes a strong argument that media and stereotypes coincide, I disagree with the idea that television should be scrutinized “Television content analysis should be carefully scrutinized in terms of this kind of ethnocentrism,”

. This inquiry project for me is an exploration as to where stereotypes come from not a condemnation of an act that everyone participates in. Through my world into neat categories. This is human nature and because of this I don’t necessarily agree with scrutinizing the media but yet keeping it in check so it doesn’t get too compartmented and farther from the truth that all people show all behaviors and feelings. I find that the quote “If we fail to examine the evaluative as well as the descriptive components of stereotypes, there is a danger of mistaking the presence of… values for the absence of stereotypes and, therefore, for more true and realistic representations” Needing further clarification. Is it that those who can ignore these things don’t stereotype? IS that at all possible? If stereotyping is human nature how can we act to reevaluate this action which could potentially change the way we think of the world? Is it impossible to Stereotype and still be able to understand the person’s values?  Is stereotyping something that we group into bad or good? Is it a necessary evil?


Stereotypes in the media

The quote “Popular literature is stereotypical- stick characters and relieved by superficially distinctive gimmicks” I agree with but is it a bad thing to agree with? When watching T.V we are relaxing, I mean how many times is it heard that someone just wants to curl up and watch a movie? So if this is a relaxing act of using stereotypes in media why is it surrounded with negative context? If stereotypes make the world around us easier to rationalize and understand why is it a bad thing if while relaxing we make our entertainment easier to understand by stereotypes, to avoid the extra thought process of discovering who and what people are like? It is understood that extreme cases of stereotypes they can be offensive or the deletion of some feeling and actions in response to over use of others can be offensive as well. But it is as easy to draw a line between making it easy to understand and love, like the American sweetheart, and something that is offensive? Where would that line fall, can there even be one? Does this “the suggestiveness of their simple recognizability has become more of a weakness”? Does it make us weak to just assume these things?

The Neurology of Stereotypes”.

“We all use stereotypes, probably more than we’d care to admit, because they are fast and efficient cognitive shortcuts that save us a lot of time and energy” I agree with this as part of the reason we use them but is that the only reason that we do? Could our mind find the space to dedicate to understand everyone we pass on the street?

“Do we know when we are falling back on a broad caricature, or do we use them automatically, without deliberation or conscious awareness” IS this only way we use them, because once people categorize others is that the only way that they think of them? I now that they say that first impressions stick but is that always the case. It’s a mixture of both sides although that it is easy to categorize others

Based on distinctive groups us as humans can override the first impression. This is used as the baseline of many media outputs that are successful today.


Beyond stereotypes

“People of different religions and political beliefs often live peacefully together, and it requires an explosive mix of historical factors buried in folk-memory and contemporary socio-political events to trigger conflicts,”

It is acceptable to diminish those who object the stereotypes placed upon them to those who are angered over an explosive occasion? It’s obvious that this can cause revolt against stereotypes, but it isn’t the only thing.  What exactly is defined as explosive? I find that this term needs to further be explained. Is it that there are two sides with stereotypes, either accepted or angered by them? Is it possible to not be okay with it and somehow act without anger?





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