It is a general perception that the gender-based stereotype is still prevalent in both the educational and entertainment TV programs aimed at children. Often the programs have more male characters than the female characters. They also depict the female characters showing fear and sadness and males showing more anger.
A recent study conducted on eight educational and entertainment television programs on children tackled these perceptions.
South Dakota State University Associate Professor of Psychology Rebecca Martin conducted a content analysis of eight programs for children, between the ages of 3 to 11, aired on television networks including PBS, Nickelodeon/NickJr. and Disney and studied the male-female character representation and depiction of their emotions such as fear, anger, happiness and sadness.
The study revealed that the four entertainment programs showed a trend of counter-stereotyped emotions. When a female is showing fear, it is coded as stereotyped, and for male it was coded as counter-stereotyped. The four educational programs, however, did not have any differences in the portrayal of stereotyped or counter-stereotyped emotions, according to the study. The study also suggested for more studies in future to investigate the following implications on children by these programs.
To read full article:
Martin, R. (2017). Gender and Emotion Stereotypes in Children’s Television. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 61(3), 499-517.