When we think about the relationship between gender and media, one of the most popular ways in which it has been discussed is through an exploration of the media’s representation of women in comparison to men, so issues of such differential representation is the primary focus of this unit. We look at the research which has been undertaken on this topic, considering why we get what we get and the various strategies which have been employed to challenge the stereotypes and change the picture.
The representation of women and men in media discourse is at risk of gender bias. In this section we refer to the intrinsic characteristics and to the traditional use of languages that may lead to an unequal representation of women. Focusing on the grammatical features of different languages and the grammatical choices available to the speaker we also present examples of good practices for a gender-sensitive use of language. Furthermore we clarify how 'gender' is used in the AGEMI project; as well as how policy discourse reflects principles and norms.
One of the key issues in relation to gender and media is the question of women's leadership within media industries and how more women in decision-making positions could change the ways in which women and men are represented and indeed change the picture in more fundamental ways. This unit looks at the research which has focused on the factors which inhibit women's career ambitions and considers the strategies which have been developed by a variety of stakeholders to support and promote women in senior posts.
We have recently witnessed a significant escalation of violence against women, including women media workers, both online and offline, as identified by campaigns such as #metoo and #timesup, and there have been persistent demands by media unions such as the International Federation of Journalists to challenge what many consider to be the unparalleled impunity to target women journalists for simply doing their job. This unit explores some of the issues which contribute to this abusive environment, as well as detailing the ways in which women journalists, media unions and NGOs are fighting back, including through the development of policies, guidelines and training. Although there are no separate GEMTalks in this unit, there are embedded interviews with women journalists in each of the mini-lectures, all of which can also be accessed via the GEMTalks tab from the main menu.
The ways in which gender is always inscribed with all the other aspects of ourselves is often overlooked, so in this unit we consider how we never 'just' our sex, our gender is always mutable and, accepting that gender itself is a social construct, this unit asks us to think about the relationship between sex and gender and consider how the various other aspects of our unique selves, our abilities, our race and ethnic background, our age, our class, all contribute to our sense of identity and will come to the fore in particular circumstances, at particular times.
In this unit, we will gain a better understanding of the gender-technology relationship in journalism, drawing on insights from feminist media studies, journalism studies and feminist technology studies to provide a theoretical background. We will look at gendered obstacles in relation to technological innovation in journalism as well as the empowering potential of technology. More specifically, we will focus on the importance and gendering of digital skills, gender issues in data journalism, and opportunities for empowerment of women through technology.
The politics of media and communication seems to be gradually evolving, though very slowly and at uneven pace, towards more gender-aware approaches. In this unit we discuss the challenges of making gender mainstreaming in media and ICT a reality at different levels, from the local context of media organizations to the global environment where normative frameworks are elaborated. We clarify the ‘why’ and ‘what’ of gender-sensitive and gender-responsive media and ICT policies, and provide examples from the collection of good practices of the AGEMI project Resources Bank.