Sex sells … but is it selling us short?
We all play different roles in life and one of mine is dad to a seven year old daughter. At this age she is still innocent and currently unaware of the sex driven culture that awaits her. That said, she is already watching music videos, keen to hear the latest pop songs and wanting to fit in with friends and the social norms – I can’t help but wonder where it is all heading.
Mal Feebrey of ONE80TC tweeted to look out for a documentary called DreamWorlds 3. The YouTube link points to the first of seven parts that make up this fascinating insight into the music video culture and more broadly its impact on society.
I’d never considered the ramifications of this barrage of images until I recently listened to a podcast series by Andy Stanley of North Point Community Church called New Rules for Love, Sex and Dating. Though introduced as a series for singles the themes apply equally to married couples or those already in a relationship. I would encourage everyone to give it a go.
Another great podcast that addresses this is part 4 of a series by Robert Morris, called The Purity Test.
The DreamWorlds series starts with a great opening scene from Video Killed the Radio Star, the first music video ever shown by MTV in 1981 (a personal fave when I was growing up).
MTV, Rage and the Saturday morning video shows were all part of my culture, and doubtless part of many others through to today. What I hadn’t appreciated was the influence, the stereotypes and the behavioral attitudes that were being embedded into my psyche.
What started as relatively inane references to music and sex has become so tightly linked that unless they are completely entwined then a female artists music just won’t sell.
Think about it, how many women break into the pop culture without showing off a lithe body and supporting female crew?
Regardless of talent, song writing ability.
Sure there will be exceptions, but isn’t that the point … it’s an exception.
The Fuel of Desire
Another video, War Zone, shows the simple act of walking down the street becomes a dash for survival. That may sound overly dramatic but only if you’re male!
Having been part of the fuel I am slowly watching my daughter enter the fire.
It concerns me that in but a few years my daughter’s wonderful childish character, her whole being, will be reduced to but a few body parts. That I, as a male, have supported this cultural behaviour.
A Cultural Shift
So how do we shift our culture? How do we redefine the rules? How do we raise not only our daughters but our sons to appreciate women for their their whole self not just the external features? That music videos, references to women as hoes, whores and property isn’t acceptable? How do we truly achieve equality?
Women’s suffrage earned women the right to vote and run for office. What movement will earn women the right to respect? The right not to be treated as commodities?
Having traveled so far from the commoditisation of humanity in the last century it pains me to see us so rapidly dehumanising women in such a short space of time.