About the Issue

  • Women hold only 5% of clout positions in mainstream media.
  • Women comprised 9% of directors and 15% of film writers in the top 250 grossing films of 2012.
  • The United States is 90th in the world in terms of women in national legislatures.
  • Women hold 18% of the seats in Congress (the equivalent body in Rwanda is over 50% female).
  • Women are merely 4% of Fortune 500 CEOs.
  • About 25% of girls will experience teen dating violence.
  • The number of cosmetic surgical procedures performed on youth 18 or younger more than tripled from 1997 to 2007.
  • Among youth 18 and younger, liposuctions nearly quadrupled between 1997 and 2007 and breast augmentations increased nearly six-fold in the same 10-year period.
  • 65% of American women and girls report disordered eating behaviors.

REPORT: The Status of Women in the U.S. Media 2013 (via Women’s Media Center)

Sources for Miss Representation documentary stats


Resources and Additional Information by Subject Matter

Media: Consumption, Literacy and Advocacy

Gender: Representation in the Media and Sexualization

Self-Esteem, Abuse and Body Image

Leadership: Women’s Leadership, Leadership Development and Media Advocacy

House Party Kit



Healthy Media Guidelines

MissRepresentation.org is a proud member of the Healthy MEdia Commission. The Commission recently developed a comprehensive list of aspirational elements to consider when determining whether or not media’s representation of women and girls is healthy and realistic. We believe that all forms of media should strive to include these elements:

  • Healthy body images
  • Active and diverse female characters
  • Equal and healthy relationships
  • Increased number of roles for women and girls

Click here for more information on the elements of healthy media and girls.


Recommended readings

From Jennifer Siebel Newsom and the MissRepresentation.org team.

Can’t Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes The Way We Think And Feel
By Jean Kilbourne

Closing the Leadership Gap: Add Women, Change Everything
By Marie C. Wilson

Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture
By Ariel Levy

Globalizing Feminisms, 1789-1945
Edited By Karen Offen

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
By Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn

In a Different Voice
By Carol Gilligan

The Lolita Effect: The Media Sexualization of Young Girls and What We Can Do About It
By M. Gigi Durham, Ph.D.

The Macho Paradox: Why Some Men Hurt Women And How All Men Can Help
By Jackson Katz

Notes from the Cracked Ceiling: Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, and What It Will Take for A Woman to Win
By Anne E. Kornblut

Reality Bites Back: The Troubling Truth About Guilty Pleasure TV
by Jennifer L. Pozner, Women In Media & News

Sexism in America: Alive, Well, and Ruining Our Future
By Barbara J. Berg, Ph.D.

The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Changes Everything
By Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress

Women World Leaders
By Laura A. Liswood

Jennifer Siebel Newsom at TEDXWomen

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