As you know, I go to Georgetown University and I recently stopped by my dean’s office to speak with her about my class selections. The upperclassmen dean’s office in located in the same building as the college admissions office, and so it is full of colorful pamphlets including information of our university. While I was waiting to meet with my dean, I picked up a pamphlet and looked at it to pass some time. However, right before I began, I spontaneously decided to study how many women and men were featured in the pamphlet as an informal case study about gender representation in media on campus.
Now it’s important to note that all of these pictures were of people in academic environments, so the backgrounds of these people are more-or-less analogous. Additionally, I counted the number of men and women (students and faculty) that were the focus of the images, not the total number of men and women I could count. The result: 5 men and 10 women appeared to be the focus of the images included in the pamphlet. This subliminal message demonstrates the predominance of women in college, while (probably inadvertently) casting men as outnumbered afterthoughts. I may be incorrect about that assumption, but I am not incorrect about the number of in-focus women and men in the pamphlet. I might be reading into this case more than I should, but I still think that this example may not be different across most college campuses.