Five Documentaries About Women’s Social Issues That Everyone Should See

If you want a documentary about women's social issues, I have five great, informative, and really important ones you should watch. They all discuss issues affecting women around the world that really need to be talked about. All of these are really great and definitely deserve a watch!

 

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Miss Representation

This documentary written by Jennifer Siebel Newsom reveals how media and culture have contributed to the underrepresentation of women in power roles in our society. Specifically, the documentary addresses issues surrounding women in politics, how women are represented in media, and how women are talked about in news. The documentary is highly interesting due to its ability to shine a light on many aspects that are seen as inherent in society. Miss Representation criticizes the idea that a woman’s value lies in her sexual appeal as opposed to her intelligence or ambition.

 

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Killing Us Softly 4: Advertising Image of Women

Killing Us Softly Four is Jean Kilbourne's fourth installment of the series dealing with the objectification of women and girls through advertisement. Drawing on about thirty years of experience in the field, Kilbourne outlines how aspects of advertisements today have gotten worse in their sexualization of women. Throughout, Kilbourne critiques aspects of media such as sexualizing young girls, replacing women's bodies with objects, and the excessive use of photoshop. These aspects have been shown to lead to low self-esteem and increases in body image issues among women and girls. Kilbourne hopes that by calling attention to issues in advertising the negative effects can be reduced.

 

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Body Typed

Body Typed is a series of 3 short films (Wet Dreams and False Images, The Guarantee, and 34x25x36) that addresses issues with media influencing the perceived need to be physically perfect. The documentary draws on interviews with photoshop professionals to present many of the issues regarding how women are expected to look.

 

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The Hunting Ground

This documentary addresses the widespread issues of sexual assault and rape on American college campuses. The Hunting Ground presents many individuals who recount their experiences of sexual assault and how their college covered up the experience. This highly emotional documentary touches on many important issues such as, wide spread rates of rape on college campuses, victim blaming, and defense of perpetrators.

 

(Photo Courtesy of IMDB)

Half the Sky

Half the Sky is a four-hour documentary made off of the book written by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. This documentary addresses world-wide oppression of women and follows the ways in which some women, through means of their own or the utilization of aid organizations, combat the oppression they are facing. Both the book and documentary address issues such as rape, maternal mortality, genital mutilation, and sex trafficking.

 

All these documentaries can be hard to watch but they are highlighting extremely important issues that are prevalent in the world today. They shine a light on how many aspects of society, that have come to be viewed as normal and often go unnoticed, can have extremely harmful repercussions, not just for women but for everyone. These documentaries are very important for everyone to see because, change can’t happen until people are made aware of the issues.