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Gender roles and sexuality in the media

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Stars Screen Binge Culture Media. Tech Innovate Gadget Mission: Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds. Does Hollywood have a gender problem? Story highlights Gender stereotypes are incredibly effective at teaching boys and girls what the culture expects Luckily, parents can assert control over the messages that Hollywood dishes out.

Gender stereotypes are messing with your kid. It's not just one movie. It's not just one TV show. It's constant exposure to the same dated concepts in the media over and over, starting before preschool and lasting a lifetime -- concepts like: Boys are smarter than girls; certain jobs are best for men and others for women; and even that girls are responsible for their own sexual assaults.

According to the Gender roles and sexuality in the media, which analyzed more than articles, interviews, books, and other social-scientific research, gender stereotypes in movies and on TV shows are more than persistent; they're incredibly effective at teaching kids what the culture expects of boys and girls. What makes these messages stick -- and harder for parents to counteract -- is that they're timed for the precise moment in kids' development when they're most receptive to their influence.

Girls feel less 'smart' than boys by age 6, research says. Think of preschoolers who are just beginning to identify as boys or girls.

Gender stereotypes in movies and...

The characters they see on TV and in movies often have an obvious masculine or feminine appearance, such as a superhero's big muscles or a princess' long hair.

These characteristics also are often associated with specific traits -- for example, being strong and brave or fearful and meek. Fast-forward to the tween and teen years, when characters begin to wrestle with relationships, sex, and job prospects. That "strong and brave" superhero becomes aggressive and hostile.

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