Discussion Reply 4

Answer two of the following questions, and respond to at least one other student’s post afterward for a total of at least 400 words. (chapter 6 and 8)

1. According to Sternheimer, in what ways has sex been a controversial issue in American popular culture for nearly 100 years? When did politicians first begin calling for government censorship of Hollywood, and for what reasons, including those having nothing to do with sex? Do you believe that Hollywood films still represent sexuality in distorted ways, especially when compared to films from other countries? How so?

2. Discuss the recent controversy over teen “sexting.” What are some of the key underlying fears, and what actual evidence supports or undermines these concerns? How does present teen sexual activity compare to decades past, and what demographic patterns seem to exist?

3. What arguments are presented linking popular culture to obesity, particularly advertising and television, and why does Sternheimer find this connections more complicated than they appear? What other socioeconomic factors may play a greater role?

4. What are some of the possible links between the fashion industry and eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia? What other factors does the author propose as greater indicators in girls’ lives? In your own experience, to what degree do you believe media and popular culture influence our perceptions of our bodies and beauty as a whole? Do you think that advertisers and the fashion industry bear a responsibility to promote a greater diversity of each?

And please give a response to this post: (I will post after you finish)


1. According to Sternheimer, sex has been a contentious issue in American pop culture for many decades because of evolving cultural norms. Parents have often been reluctant to expose their children to sex education while pop culture has taken advantage of the fact that anything to do with sexuality sells. The representation of sexuality in pop culture has been controversial because artists view women as beings with an insatiable sexual drive. Although such misrepresentation in media and popular culture has caused considerable uneasiness, pop cultures have been slow in adopting new views on sex and sexuality. The government began calling for the censorship of Hollywood movies when it became apparent that the industry was promoting sexualized images and the attendant promiscuity. However, it could not regulate the sex industry. The sexual revolution implied society became tolerant of sexuality in films. Sternheimer (2018) mentions that government censorship began in 1934 with the enactment and enforcement of a code that restricted film production companies from exposing young children to immorality.
I think the Hollywood industry presents sex in distorted ways because it understands it can make money from selling sexually appealing movies. Nevertheless, it is important to recall that the movie industry responds to customer needs and expectations. As a result, the motion pictures that Hollywood produces reflect society’s needs. Despite the diversity among citizens in the United States, the film industry still portrays beautiful female characters as skinny or partially nude. The industry tends to negate all efforts made towards equality because it reinforces the notion that a woman’s value is hinged on her appearance.

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