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From me to you, highlighting challenges faced by girls

Dear Daughters, A Mom of Two Sons Raised Them to Value Women As People, Not Objects

Dear Daughters,

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, star of Don John, is a feminist, thanks to his mom who made sure her sons were able to see people for who they really are, and not as they are dictated to us by society. See below for the segment of his interview on The Ellen DeGeneres show where he describes the character he created, and what his mom taught him about perception vs reality.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt says, “Don Jon is about a guy who sees the world, and especially women, as just things, more than as people, you know, objects for his consumption. And that was something that my mom would always point out to my brother and me that our culture does often portray, women especially, but it happens to both women and men, but women especially, like objects.”

He went on to say that he and his family would attend Lakers games together and whenever the cheerleaders would come on his mom would point out the story that was being told. That story is one that is still being told today. The men get to be the heroic, skilled athletes and the women just get to be pretty.

“She wanted my brother and I to be aware of it because we see these images on tv and in movies and in magazines all the time and if you don’t stop and think about it, it just sort of seeps into your brain and becomes reality. And that’s what Don Jon is about. He grew up seeing these images and that’s how he sees women now [as there for his consumption].”

It couldn’t have been said any better than that Joseph! That is the problem. We don’t question it. And as we settle into the story that is being sold to us – that women are valued most for their looks and are simply objects for men to conquer – soon it becomes reality. Soon women themselves can’t even see what is being done to them. Soon women are fighting other women for male attention, instead of supporting each other in becoming the best they can be. See the previous post Dear Daughters, If Sex Sells Why Don’t We See Scantily Clad Men in Advertisements?

“It’s worth paying attention to the roles that are sort of dictated to us and to realize that we don’t have to fit in to those roles. We can be anybody we want to be.” – Joseph Gordon-Levitt



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