There are numerous practices rooted in misogyny that many of us utilize as a weapon and shield in our daily lives. How we see influential women, and our subsequent judgment that eventually snowballs into becoming public opinion, often has the potential to not only be harmful at large, but also negatively impact the individuals concerned. If you need help navigating through whether or not you’re being misogynistic towards actresses, here’s a list (that you can feel free to add to):
Attaching A Misogynistic “Shelf Life”
Attaching a shelf-life to actresses, when it comes to their age, or their choice to opt for motherhood (and using that as a speculative determinant), is thoroughly misogynistic, especially given the fact that those standards do not apply to their male counterparts.
Is she married? Is she dating someone? If she is, can we somehow use that as a statement around her character? Is she pregnant? Questions and subsequent actions such as these are invasive, especially when an artist has only offered up their art to you for consumption, and not their personal sense of self.
Not Cutting Them The Slack You Cut Actors
Double standards exist. There are no two ways about that. An actress smoking will warrant a ton of backlash, whereas an actor doing smoking photoshoots is the norm. The harmful act of smoking becomes permissible for one, and inexcusable for the other. This same principle can apply to a bevy of other examples, but you get the gist.
Unrealistic Body Expectations
There is one body type we see being passed off as acceptable, and it is not one that is easy to obtain or maintain for women at large. Throw in pregnancies and the disappearance of actresses till they have shed that weight – all of these uphold markers of a misogynistic mindset we tend to have when judging women on-screen.
Women need not do much to be a target of shaming. The slightest display of humanness unleashes a bevy of trolls, who send out messages that police their sense of self at the drop of a hat.
How Can We Do Better?
Our opinions matter. The mindset we have and choose to project has an impact. Why let the ingenious work of some of the most iconic stars be overshadowed by misogynistic thinking? A moment of reflection and introspection could go a long way. Perhaps, it’s high time we started trying.