Sexism in Video Games

Sexism is not a recent phenomenon. In spite of its proven downsides, it continues to persist, but this time in a very sophisticated manner. In the past, biases against women were plain and clear. Historical evidence provides that incidences such as domestic violence and rape were common women experiences. Such injustices would have persisted thanks to the emergence of women movements, which largely aided in the liberation of women. In contrast to the past, present-day women have more freedom. However, the freedom that they presently enjoy is below par. The chances of them gaining more freedom appear to be lean in consideration of how sexism continues to proliferate. Video games are perfect examples of how sexism continuous to spread unrestrictedly. In spite of them being just games, sexism is sexism. Accordingly, sexism in video games is detrimental to the society.

Sexualized images largely influence women health (Barbato para.1). In most video games, women are depicted as individuals in need of protection and safety. Developers assign them bodies relating to a sense of security. According to research, such depictions have a psychological impact on women. Research by American scholars on the causes of anxiety and depression, found out that sexualized images largely contribute to depression among women (Barbato para.2). Although the idea of depicting women as highly in need of security is common as well as acceptable, research shows that it greatly affects the mental health of women. It makes them live in constant fear of rape, sexual assault, and victimization. Collectively, these fears damage their health. There is a close association between depression and heart diseases. Prolonged depression affects the heart rate speed, which in turn tightens blood vessels, increasing the possibility of a heart attack. If untreated, depression may lead to death. In view of this, it is appropriate to conclude that sexism in video games is one of the causes of death.

Sexism in video games affects behaviors. By depicting women as weak, video games demoralize women from working hard. Put simple, they do not encourage a culture of resilience among women. It is important to state that the consequences of demoralization are diverse and manifold. In workplaces, it hampers business growth by making women feel undervalued (John para.1). Such feelings lower their commitment to assignments, which in turn leads to less output. Should they continue outputting less, then it is obvious that their respective organizations are bound to suffer great losses. In schools, demoralization affects the academic performance of women. In this way, it hurts their future, making them lead average lives. Sexism in video games likewise paints women as sexual objects. In doing so, it presents women as individuals whose beauty is the most important aspect. Such presentations are likely to influence the way women dress. In summary, sexism in video games has negatively influenced the thought process of women.

Sexism in video games is a new form of bullying (The Conversation). It is an attempt to portray women as inferior to men as well as irrelevant in the society. Depicting women as inferior to men encourages the culture of gender stereotyping. From basic knowledge, gender stereotyping is detrimental in the sense that it is an agent of hatred and conflict in the society. Continued gender stereotyping minimizes the possibility of there being a peaceful world. Sexism in video games furthers bullying by portraying women as physically weak. Psychologically, such portrayals affect the way men view women and vice versa. Men are likely to consider women as irrelevant or even having no importance. Such mentalities may influence men to continue the culture of lording over women. On the other hand, such depictions are likely to promote passiveness in women. Bullying, regardless of the how it takes place, has both long term and short-term effects on women. A good example of a long-term effect of bullying is self-esteem problems. By using sexualized objects, video games significantly affect how women feel about themselves, an aspect likely to cause anxiety disorders.

Sexism in video games may affect relationships. In most relationships, women often blame themselves for any dispute or failing (Nasteska para.3). This is mainly because of the way societies define women. In most societies, conflicts within relationships are attributed to the shortcomings of women. Sexualized objectification furthers this culture by making women submit to male supremacy. It achieves this by portraying them as individuals less superior to men. Such portrayals affect relationships in the sense that they encourage women to endure injustices. While enduring injustices is a noble thing, at times it is dangerous. For example, research shows that some incidents of domestic violence turn tragic. This implies that, by implicitly encouraging women to endure injustices, video games are putting the lives of most women at risk.

Sexism in video games may influence career choices. Many women are shying away from politics. Their argument is that politics is largely male-dominated. Besides, they argue that politics is an area that demands a lot of strength and character. Efforts to encourage women to join politics have never been successful (Rockhampton Morning Bulletin). However, there is a hope that such attitudes will change. Sexism in video games has contributed to some extent in terms of career choices in consideration of the fact that it portrays women as unsuitable for high-ranking positions. In most video games, one will not fail to recognize the clerical role assigned to women. There is a high probability that such representations affect the way women choose their careers. Sexualized objectification makes them believe that some jobs are not suitable for women, and so, they shy away from them.

Sexism in video games may affect global economy. Research has shown that having more women at the top aids significantly in economic development. Likewise, companies that have more women have in most cases excelled above those having fewer women. One of the reasons behind the underrepresentation of women in the commerce sphere is gender bias. There are beliefs that women cannot lead. Such beliefs stem from the widespread misconceptions about women wherein the society looks at them as sexual objects. Instead of ending such misconceptions, video games have instead promoted them. They accomplish this by presenting women as second-class citizens. In most games, developers present women as persons needing guidance. As a result, they obscure the true worth and potential of women. In this manner, they hurt economies by discouraging women from exploiting their potentials.

Sexism in video games is a mockery to the rights of women. For years, women have fought for gender equality, arguing that all people are equal. The struggle for equality has not been easy. There are records of bloodshed, imprisonments, and multiple deaths. Their struggles in addition to successful liberation campaigns has been the basis by which women view themselves as forces to reckon in the society. Women have equally abhorred the custom of painting them as dependents. Their hope is that the society views them as co-equals of men. Sexualized images do not paint this. Instead, they portray women as subordinates to men. In this manner, they disregard the notion that women are of great essence in the world. In brief, sexualized objectification has negatively represented women.

Lastly, sexism in video games furthers gender bias in both men and women. Gender stereotyping is a common phenomenon among men and women. In general, men consider women as less intelligent, naturally weak, and dependable people. On the other hand, women regard men as harsh, domineering, and merciless. While these ideologies are largely incorrect, it has been difficult to convince both sides to abandon them. Ending such misconceptions requires corporate efforts towards the same. Video games are not helping to end the vice, for by assigning characters roles based on gender, they are furthering the evil. This implies that gender equality will remain a recurring problem. Accordingly, sexualized objectification should end in video games.

In conclusion, sexism is deleterious. However, it is not clear why it exists. It is also surprising that sexism is a global phenomenon, raising the question as to whether it is an innate attribute. Psychologists confirm that sexism is not natural. According to psychodynamic theories, sexism is learned. For that reason, it is possible to end it. There is a sharp contrast between the present-day sexism and past sexism. In the past, it was open and worse. Today, it is hidden and harmful. Sexism in video games has rarely received attention in the academia despite the fact that it is corrosive. Although most people have become used to gender stereotyping in video games, research counsels immediate action against this trend. Sexism in video games influences behaviors, relationships, health, careers, and above all furthers gender inequality. In brief, sexism in video games is harmful to the health of the world.

Works Cited

Barbato, Lauren. 'Bustle'. N.P., 2015. Web. 9 Dec. 2015.

John, Sydelle. 'How Sexist Words Affect Attitudes And Behavior In The Workplace'. Small Business - N.P., 2015. Web. 9 Dec. 2015.

Nasteska, Aleksandra. 'Tackling Sexism In Relationships Gender Focus'. N.P., 2015. Web. 9 Dec. 2015.

Rockhampton Morning Bulletin,. Almost Half Females Say Sexism Affects Career Choic. N.P., 2015. Web. 9 Dec. 2015.

The Conversation. Sexism in Video Gaming Is Just another Form of Bullying. N.P., 2015. Web. 9 Dec. 2015.