Sensa Nostra spoke with a self-proclaimed feminist, who believes that it’s women working for women’s magazines that are a more pernicious force against women than the men we usually think of. She says they are responsible for maintaining gender stereotypes, corroding women’s confidence, and advocating misogyny.
As a young teenager one of my favorite treats was a trip to the corner shop to buy the latest Cosmo, Glamour, 17, or whatever glossy women’s magazine I could get my hands on. I would read them cover-to-cover at home, hoping to unlock the secrets of what it is to be a woman. I looked to these magazines for advice on what to wear, how to behave, and, most complexly, understand boys. But as I got older and feminist sensibilities began to kick in, I began to realize what utter crap I’d been reading all these years. These magazines written for women by women were, and still are, working against gender equality and maintaining gender stereotypes. I was confused and disheartened. Until that point, I always assumed that every woman was down with the feminist agenda, but here are all these female writers shooting every other woman in the foot.
I haven’t read another ‘women’s mag’ since then. I really wish others would see the crap they spout for what it really is: a poisonous cocktail of women hate and mindless drivel. Most of these magazines are made up entirely of mindless fluff about bags and shoes, irritatingly assuming that’s all women are interested in. Any topic of social or political interest is far too much for us ladies to handle, so best dumb it down and make it achingly shallow, so as not to confuse our tiny lady brains. One of the biggest things is how male-centred they are. Even though they are aimed at women, it seems that every copy includes tips on how to impress men, how to give a better blow job, and how to understand your man – as if they are all the same. Even worse are those detailing how to act more like a man. One was about how women can change their body language to be more aggressive like men to procure a better job. Apart from being incredibly dull and lacking originality, they seem to be in some kind of fifties time warp where women shouldn’t have anything better to do than find a husband, and be ready to bow to his every need.
Sure these magazine say they are all for helping you accepting your body for what it is, but the fact is that, these magazines shame us for looking normal, shoving diet and exercise tips, along with plastic surgery adverts, in our faces. We probably wouldn’t have all these body hang-ups in the first place without these images. I don’t know who these women are, but stop being such bitches! Stop hating on other women. Stop hating yourselves. Stop dumbing yourselves down. Stop pretending to act like men to get ahead, and actually do something towards gaining equality, rather than working against it! Being the optimist I am, I hope and look forward to the day that these magazines have been dumped on the bonfire and become extinct, when women realize how backwards and misogynistic they really are. It can’t come quickly enough.