Feminist Media – looking at anime, television, film, video games, and literature through a feminist lens
Instructor: Claire Graman
Dates and times: July 19, 20, 21, 22, & 23, 2021, 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.
For ages 13-17
Platform: Computer with Zoom
Supplies/requirements: Writing materials and access to a computer with Zoom.
Art and entertainment reflect and shape the world around us, but not always in the best way. This class teaches girls to think critically about the media they consume. From literature to anime, we’ll practice critiquing media for feminist and sexist themes. As a result, girls will be empowered to better understand the world around them.
1. Introduction to Feminist Media
We talk about what feminism is and how to do a feminist critique/close reading of media with tools like the Bechdel Test, introducing concepts like the Male Gaze and Intersectionality. How has the Feminist Movement changed since the Victorian times? What if gender roles were reversed?
Lady Murasaki, a Japanese noblewoman, wrote the first novel, The Tale of Genji, in the 11th century. Even so, women are too often excluded from the literary canon. In this lesson, we read and discuss poems and other literature written by women.
Feminist Film Theory began in the 1970s with Second Wave Feminism. Because of this, the culture focused on how film portrayed women, and how cinema reinforced patriarchy. Clips from movies and television show how media objectifies women.
4. Pop Culture
Anime, video games, and memes show us how they reflect mainstream society’s message about women’s roles. From The Honeymooners and I Love Lucy to Xena Warrior Princess, we see the evolution of the expectations for women. This unit covers early video games, and as a result, some of the first women game programmers.
Girls choose a piece of media and present it, analyzing it with what they’ve learned as a result of taking Feminist Media.