Kim Golombisky Elizabeth McKenna Boosalis
University of South Florida University of South Florida
During six focus groups of mass communications majors viewing three music videos featuring women artists, women read the videos critically for gender. But their critiques relied on problematic “girl power” versions of feminism that resulted in incomplete or ineffective arguments. Although participants rejected what they perceived as unrealistically beautiful and hyper-sexualized representations of women's bodies, participants' interest in critiquing the videos was limited to what the artists looked like. Participants did not name the visual production techniques that objectify women's bodies and did not discuss industry sexism or power relations unless prompted. Instead, participants blamed women artists for exploiting “sex sells” in their videos.