On a scale unprecedented in human history, the media communicates cultural values, dictates gender norms, and tells us who we can and cannot be. The collective message that seeps into our subconscious is that women’s value lies primarily in youth, beauty and sexuality. As a result, both men and women have a limited understanding of who women are and what women can be, leading to the under-representation of women in key leadership roles and skyrocketing levels of eating disorders, sexual assault, cosmetic surgery, and exploitative pornography. In this climate of dangerous stereotypes and rigid gender roles, women are rarely seen as powerful figures, and it is difficult for the average woman to feel powerful herself.
–Jennifer Newsom, Writer, Director, Producer of the documentary film Miss Representation