Document Type


First Faculty Advisor

Jeffrey Cabusao

Second Faculty Advisor

Judith McDonnell


women; film; television; feminism; media studies; cultural studies


Bryant University

Rights Management



Even though gender diversity of characters has increased in television shows and films, this study hypothesized that female characters who are presented as feminist icons function as feminist backlash and perpetuate negative and harmful stereotypes. This was found to be especially true for career-focused women. Applying a cultural studies approach to reading television and film studies through a feminist lens identified the antifeminist factors that continue to cause the perpetual loop of independent women reverting to dated social roles. This research connects what audiences consume through popular media to how they perceive their female co-workers. The findings of this study can help employees identify when they may be stereotyping a female co-worker, but more importantly why they so easily make assumptions about their female colleagues and how media texts have influenced their perceptions of women in the workplace.