Stereotypes in Media

Stereotypes in Media Watch 4 hours of television during the next week, preferably during evening hours when more commercials appear or analyze four Web sites with advertisements. Record the number of representatives from different cultural and microcultural groups (ethnic, racial, gender, age, social class, etc.) that appear in the commercials and document the role that each person plays. Answer the following questions: How many different groups were represented? What groups were most represented? Why do you think this is so? What groups were least represented? Why do you think this is so? What differences, if any, were there in the roles that members of the various groups played? Did one group play more sophisticated or more glamorous roles than others? In how many cases were people depicted in stereotypical roles (e.g., African Americans as athletes or women as homemakers)? What stereotypes were reinforced in the commercials? What do your findings suggest about the power of the media and its effect on identity formation and intercultural communication?

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