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The Jennifer Siebel Newsom misrepresentations keynote speaks about how the media negatively represents what women are worth and what they are capable of. Newsom recalls how her daughter was given certain gender identifying gifts like pink things, while her son on the other hand was given letters and notes implying that he would be the next president. Newsom wondered to herself why her daughter who was born first didn’t receive those sorts of things as well. Newsom believes that even from birth girls are unknowingly put into a category of what they can and can’t be, ultimately createing a huge handicap for women and girls.
She believes that our culture and marketplace devalues women, while continuing to expand opportunities for men and boys. Media is the most powerful messenger and children are especially vulnerable to these messages. Subconsciously, adults and children take in these messages and in turn can drastically change what we perceive as right and wrong, and how certain genders are suppose to act or think. She believes that the media is killing girls’ ambition and ultimately defining what they will be when they grow up, while also destroying empathy and emotion in boys and men.
Most of what we see and hear in the media comes from a male perspective and this has to change. Women are far more valuable then how they’re portrayed in our culture.