Gender Stereotypes In Horror Films Essay

1070 Words5 Pages
In the media, women are often portrayed in a condescending way as having more negative qualities than other traditional social groups, such as white males. This representation presents viewers with ways of thinking and acting towards people of this particular group, therefore affecting communication and perception in reality.
Dolf Zillmann and James Weaver looked into the study of horror films and the gender stereotyped behavior. They concluded that “girls and female adolescents [in horror films] who are witnessed displaying fearfulness and protective need in the face of terror on the screen are more favorably evaluated by male and female peers and non-peers than their counterparts who are witnessed displaying no distress” (p. 87) The illustration of fear is merely only one example of women stereotyping in that viewers
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For instance, males are often praised and admired for their sexual expertise while women are often judged for their sexual promiscuity. In stalker films, the final girls who live until the end, always happen to remain virgins. Those that engage in sexual behavior often die at the hands of the killer. As a whole, society has become more accepting of women’s equality to men; thus, the goal of this analysis then is to observe whether this societal view has impacted the horror film industry over the last few decades. This will help explore the female stereotypes that exist within early horror films and more recent horror films, and how these presentations may or may not reflect the ideology of the time period during which producers created the films. Though many researchers have studied this topic at length, this is a new way to look at this area because it is not merely observing stereotypes of women in horror film, but it is conducting this study across time and societal change (Brewer,
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