Sunday, November 2, 2014

Dina's First post!

I am so excited to begin this fellowship with WomenNC. We had our first workshop last weekend at Meredith College. Reconnecting with the members and fellows was a pleasure. Working with this passionate group of people will be such an incredible opportunity. We spent the workshop getting to know each other, going over the timeline and responsibilities of the fellowship, and narrowing down our research topics. Originally, I had planned to choose a topic concerning sexual assault and the role of men and boys in the elimination of violence against women. However, because of the discussion at the workshop and the conversation I had with one of the mentors, I decided to go with a different choice. The 2015 CSW theme is Beijing +20 which includes Women and Poverty, Education and Training of Women, Women and Health, Violence against Women, Women and Armed Conflict, Women and the Economy, Women in Power and Decision-making, Institutional Mechanism for the Advancement of Women, Human Rights of Women, Women and the Media, Women and the Environment, and The Girl-child.

In our society, female leaders are not portrayed in the same light as their male counterparts. Not only that, but also, women’s rights as a whole has a different representation in the media as well. I chose to focus on Women in the Media, more specifically, females in leadership positions. How are these women portrayed? When was the last time you saw an article or video clip in the media about Hillary Clinton that focused on her accomplishments rather than her wardrobe? It is vital to research female leadership, especially in the media. To make a difference, to ratify CEDAW, we need more female leaders. We need more women in positions of power to make these very important changes. I aim to research the best ways to do just that, to empower women to pursue positions of leadership. But first, it is necessary to understand how female leaders are being depicted in the media and consequently in our society. Additionally, I am interested in researching women in advertisements, movies, TV shows, music videos, etc. There are stereotypes being constantly perpetuated about women, more specifically, cultural stereotypes, racial stereotypes, religious stereotypes, etc. Women are consistently portrayed as helpless, weak, and child-like in advertisements not to mention within the music industry. The way women are described and treated within music lyrics in today’s society is simply appalling. As my research continues, I will find a way to tie all of these ideas together so as to have an organized final paper and presentation. I had originally planned to work with Women AdvaNCe; however, that isn’t quite finalized yet because there are several other organizations that the members suggested for me to look into that are also in the running.

I am incredibly honored to be chosen as a 2015 WomenNC CSW Fellow and I can’t wait to see where this journey takes me. I know I will learn so much and will form friendships that will last a lifetime. To all the fellows, Congratulations! To all the members, thank you for this amazing opportunity!

1 comment:

  1. Great topic, Dina. As the founding principal of Wake Young Women's Leadership Academy, this topic frequently surfaced in our humanities classes as well as in special projects and seminars.

    Personally, I was particularly offended during recent political campaigns in the messaging to encourage young women to vote. Did you note this as well?

    Might be interesting to explore the research in periods (last 5 years, last 10 years, etc) b/c of the increasing places where women are rising to leadership. Wondering about what can be done to shift their paradigms with regard to women as leaders? This will give you a great platform that requires immediate action!