In such a technologically advanced and interconnected world, the influence of the media monumentally shapes our everyday lives. The news we receive, the Instagram posts we view, the magazine articles we scroll through, and all the other media we consume and put forward shift our perceptions and enlighten our perspectives.
Media’s growing influence has sprung forward the rise of important movements like #MeToo and #TimesUp, illuminating survivor stories and sparking an international discussion on important gender & sexuality topics such as sexual assault and intersectional feminism. However, with unrealistically photoshopped models populating social media sites and increasingly inappropriate, hurtful comments being directed towards women, it’s clear the quick consumption of media is not so easy, nor so simple.
GirlTalk’s 8th issue is an attempt to unpack these complications. Drawing from a wide variety of experiences and voices, this issue contains important discussions from middle and high schoolers around the world discussing their experiences navigating body image within social media, sensuality in a gendered world, the weight loss fantasy promoted by the media, and more. Interviews include reflections from Bella Glanville: former Miss Universe Great Britain, international model & nonprofit founder, and Melissa Clarke: a businesswoman pushing for the rise of women leaders in the male-dominated industry. This issue also features a powerful testimony of a sexual assault survivor discussing her reaction to Kavanaugh, and her hope for a more politically active, impactful future.
Navigating body image, sexuality, and identity, especially in this digitally scrutinizing age, isn’t easy. But we hope that through reading through this latest issue, you can find pieces of hope and beauty, and gain more clarity or possibly leave with more questions to explore these ever-evolving, important topics. The increasing influence of media is inevitable and undeniable. So the question is, how will you consume it?