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Gender and the Media Paperback – 13 Nov 2006

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Polity Press; 1st Edition edition (13 Nov. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745619150
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745619156
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 2.1 x 24.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 38,139 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"Gill′s thorough contemplation of theoretical works along with empirical research projects provides an excellent and up–to–date account of the relationship of gender to and with the media."

"This book is extremely well written, which adds to its excellence as a text that combines an expert synthesis of the literature and Gill′s own insightful analysis. Gill′s book is suitable as a core text for any media studies, cultural studies and gender studies course as an update of Van Zoonen′s 1994 text, since it contains an analysis of a diverse body of work made suitable for undergraduate level thanks to Gill′s accessible writing style."
Gender and Education

"Brilliant – a must–read for all media educators."
Newsletter of the Media Education Association

"Gender and the Media is excellent throughout and confronts the reader with an embarras de richesse of insights."
Feminism and Psychology

"Gender and the Media is a lively and stimulating read and works as an excellent introduction for students in the field of media and gender studies. It is also a grown–up book that moves beyond the current feminist preoccupation with ′girls′, to a renewed focus on ′women′ in their infinite variety. I strongly recommend it."
European Journal of Women?s Studies

"A new masterpiece in the field of feminist media studies. Gender and the Media sheds new light on where we have been, and where we are going. It will be a staple of all media studies and women′s studies classes for at least the next decade."
Andrea Press, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

"This is a thorough, lucid study which includes a good deal of new and original material, presenting it with admirable theoretical fluency yet in a clear and student–friendly way."
Angela McRobbie, Goldsmiths College

"Rosalind Gill′s book is an invaluable contribution to the field of gender and media research. Well written and engaging, it offers an overview of contemporary representations of gender, a sense of the main theoretical and methodological approaches at issue and a grounding in the cultural politics of the field."
Cynthia Carter, Cardiff University

From the Back Cover

Written in a clear and accessible style, with lots of examples from Anglo–American media, Gender and the Media offers a critical introduction to the study of gender in the media, and an up–to–date assessment of the key issues and debates.

Eschewing a straightforwardly positive or negative assessment the book explores the contradictory character of contemporary gender representations, where confident expressions of girl power sit alongside reports of epidemic levels of anorexia among young women, moral panics about the impact on men of idealized representations of the ′six–pack′, but near silence about the pervasive re–sexualization of women′s bodies, along with a growing use of irony and playfulness that render critique extremely difficult.

The book looks in depth at five areas of media – talk shows, magazines, news, advertising, and contemporary screen and paperback romances – to examine how representations of women and men are changing in the twenty–first century, partly in response to feminist, queer and anti–racist critique.

Gender and the Media is also concerned with the theoretical tools available for analysing representations. A range of approaches from semiotics to postcolonial theory are discussed, and Gill asks how useful notions such as objectification, backlash, and positive images are for making sense of gender in today′s Western media. Finally, Gender and the Media also raises questions about cultural politics – namely, what forms of critique and intervention are effective at a moment when ironic quotation marks seem to protect much media content from criticism and when much media content – from Sex and the City to revenge adverts – can be labelled postfeminist.

This is a book that will be of particular interest to students and scholars in gender and media studies, as well as those in sociology and cultural studies more generally.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By antonio on 27 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
This is a brilliant book- the best I have read on gender and media. It gives a really clear introduction to the whole field, and also explains all the different approaches used within media studies in a very accessible way. One good thing that I have not seen in other books is that it also introduces discourse analysis, queer theory and postcolonial approaches -- as well as the standard content analysis and semiotics, etc. But the best thing about this book is the really critical take it has on contemporary representations of gender in the media. It looks at representations of men as well as women, and the chapters on advertising and magazines are excellent -- especially the really clear discussion of lad magazines. Anyone who has read the author's articles about the popularity of T-shirts such as 'porn star' or `fcuk me' will see that kind of analysis of the shift from objectification to sexual subjectification really well developed here. I also particularly liked the chapter on chick lit, as I haven't seen much written about this topic, but everyone is reading these novels since the huge success of Bridget Jones. This is designed to be a textbook, but it also contains lots of original analysis, and in the concluding chapter Gill unpacks what she sees as the postfeminist sensibility that dominates today's media -- looking at things like the obsessive focus on female celebrities bodies, the rise of 'Mars and Venus' thinking which suggests that men and women are two completely different species, and the use of irony to protect sexist representations from critique. This is an absolutely brilliant book -- I can't recommend it highly enough.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By RedRosa on 20 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
I have been studying gender and media as part of a degree course and can honestly say this book was the best thing I came across not just for gender analysis but for understamnding media more generally. I wish it had been published earlier in my degree! The first part of the book is an introduction to the whole history of gender and media studies, and also gives the clearest explanations I've come across of different approaches such as semiotics, postmodernism and queer theory. Then the second part looks in details at 5 areas of the media- advertising, talk shows, news, magazines and contemporary romances. The chapters on advertising and chick lit have completely changed the way I watch TV and read novels. There are lots of examples which many people will have come across such as the Dove campaigns in advertising, Sex and the City and Bridget Jones Diary, and the author really explains everything clearly as well as using a lot of humour. In the final chapter she argues that we are living in a postfeminist media culture and is very convincing in showing how things have changed, but also arguing that sexism operates in more subtle ways today than it did in the past. It's a really good read and one of the few books I've read at Uni that I actually want to keep, and to recommned to friends who aren't doing the same course as me. I think it would be of interest to anyone who wants to think more critically about media and popular culture.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 Nov. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've noticed that the media - especially the sections of it aimed at women - have in recent years gradually become obsessed with the appearance of women. This was one reason why I stopped buying women's magazines because I'm not particularly interested in being told I'm the wrong size or should do more to keep my man interested. This book confirms what I had thought - that women are being directed to constantly monitor themselves in how they dress, eat and behave. Postfeminism has turned into a means of controlling women and making them conform to certain stereotypes - albeit slightly different from the conventional ones.

This book also goes into detail about ladmags - which I thought was interesting. I also found it confirmed what I had been thinking about sexist writing - that it is done humorously and ironically and therefore is difficult to criticise. There is a section on chick lit and how it has developed since Bridget Jones's Diary showing it still revolves around the conventional role of women in finding a man, falling in love, and getting married. I also found the section on talk shows such as Oprah of interest.

I found the book absolutely fascinating. Even though it is meant for academic study I still found it of interest to a general reader and it is one of the best books I have read on the subject of gender and how it is portrayed by the media.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Zongle on 7 Mar. 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book, even though I read it purely for pleasure, rather than for academic work.

The author manages to be interesting as well as radical, perceptive and succinct.

There aren't many radical texts which display such clarity of thought and perspective.
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