Waiting on Wednesday: Fixed It: Violence and the Representation of Women in the Media

Can’t Wait Wednesday was once Waiting on Wednesday, but the purpose is the same: for bloggers to highlight what they’re waiting on. This week I am waiting on: Fixed It: Violence and the Representation of Women in the Media

 

 

I never really thought too much about how language was used in relation to women and children and violence in the media until recently, and even then never as indepth as I should have. I did however see Jane Gilmore’s tweets on my timeline and it always gave me pause to see the vast difference between her fixes on asshole headlines that never put the responsibility for the violence against women on the ones doing the violence. I’d urge you to take a look at her timeline herE. 

And then read this article about how Fixed It started. Bc the smallest words make the biggest differences. 

Here’s the blurb

On average, at least one woman is murdered by a current or former partner every week in Australia. Far too many Australian women have experienced physical or sexual violence. Only rarely do these women capture the attention of the media and the public. What can we do to stem the tide of violence and tragedy?

Finally, we are starting to talk about this epidemic of gendered violence, but too often we are doing so in a way that can be clumsy and harmful. Victim blaming, passive voice and over-identification with abusers continue to be hallmarks of reporting on this issue. And, with newsrooms drastically cutting staff and resources, and new business models driven by rapid churn and the 24 hour news cycle journalists and editors often don’t have the time or resources bring new ways of thinking into their newsrooms.

Fixed It demonstrates the myths that we’re unconsciously sold about violence against women, and undercuts them in a clear and compelling way. This is a bold, powerful look at the stories we are told – and the stories we tell ourselves – about gender and power, and a call to action for all of us to think harder and do better.

What do you think of Fixed It?

 

22 Comments

  • I think this book would certainly be eye opening. It’s a good time too as society’s consciousness has been raised about violence against women through so many women speaking out. I will have to look for it. Thanks for sharing, Verushka!

    • Verushka says:

      You’re welcome — it’s definitely timely, and her timeline on Twitter is sooo eye opening. It really brought home how much I was used to see the usual sort of headlines.

  • This reminds me a little of something a social worker I’m working with said. How that girls and women are kind of wired to to keep things inside while boys and men usually (though not always of course) will act out more. I know it doesn’t exactly relate to this book but this just jumped into my thoughts when I read this post. Great choice!!

  • Angela says:

    Interesting! This will definitely make me look at headlines differently today.

  • Wow, this sounds interesting and like something that is really needed!

  • Ooh, this sounds like a fascinating read! It’s something I’ve never thought of, but I’m glad this author has written a book about media headlines and women. It’s about time:-)

  • Good choice! It’s all too easy to glance at headlines, but not really think about them. And very difficult to see or understand what the truth is because we may take headlines and stories at face value. And because the story is what we expect it reinforces our beliefs.

    For example, when I began working (many years ago!) I was told that men are supporting a family so I shouldn’t want, need or expect to get the same salary even for the same work. At the time that seemed reasonable to me. Not the same as accepting violence against women and children, but an example of how we believe what we see, read and are told until something happens and we wake up.

    • Verushka says:

      Exactly! And her timeline and her book illuminate that so well. You’re right — newspapers know exactly how to play on our believes and expectations — and you’re right, your experience is a great example (and I hope you are being paid so much more now!)

  • Daniela Ark says:

    “Fixed It” sounds like something I HAVE to read! I always try notice thisl anguage but I’m sure I can do much better! Ty so much for bringing it to my attention V!

    • Verushka says:

      I am sorry to say I only rarely realised I never noticed language and what it should be until recently — but I am hopefully getting better. I want to at least.

  • It sounds like it will be a powerful read.

  • Kelly says:

    This is going to be an incredibly powerful read. There’s always been an issue with the male dominated media sugar coating gender and family violence perpetrated by men, the perfect example on the cover of Fixed It. Victim blaming, implying that what she was wearing or how friendly she was was a factor in a man committing rape. There’s a few prominent female columnists who are men apologisers too but they all seem to have similar traits, they all work for Murdoch media, most Liberal voters. Super keen on reading this one too Verushka, thanks so much for putting it on my radar.

    • Verushka says:

      Definitely a powerful and timely read. I was reading Jane Gilmore’s Twitter today and saw an article she retweeted with a comment — but it was about a swim coach who groomed and abused children under his care AND the article quoted others saying how well liked and gentle he was and I just wanted to hide my head in my hands at that well worn load of BS. What the hell does any of that have to do with his crimes? And the female columnists who are men apologists — Jesus, more who just make me want to hide my head in my heads (you’re not wrong re Murdoch media).

  • This sounds like an important and timely read. I have to admit that up until recently, I rarely ever paid attention to the type of language used in headlines. I do think the whole Me Too movement and politics in America during the time of Trump has finally started to make me more aware of it and the need to call the media out on it.

    • Verushka says:

      Very much so. I am in the same boat — I didn’t until recently and finding Jane Gillmore’s Twitter realised just how prevalent the type of language is in the media. It’s sad just how used to that type of language we’ve become.

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