Essay On Role Of Women In Video Games

957 Words 4 Pages
If I told you to picture what you consider to be a gamer, the first image you would come up with is a young boy holding a controller. If I told you to come up with another image, it would be a struggle to imagine another type of gamer, and there’s a reason for that. The target demographic of the gaming industry includes men from age 18 to 34, and the industry goes to great lengths to make them the sole demographic. The sexualized representation of women in games, the backlash from men that female gamers face, and the inability of men to recognize their privilege in the industry all work together to keep the gaming industry is exclusive.
Women in video games are represented as only a handful of character types, all of them removing the human
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There is no shortage of attacks against game-playing women, ranging from verbal assault such as “get back into the kitchen” to threats of rape and murder. A notable example of this is the backlash surrounding the videos of Anita Sarkeesian. She was accused of taking gaming away from men, even though she simply criticizes the games that she admittedly plays and enjoys. She barely does anything more than a male game reviewer does, but since her criticism centers around females in the video game industry, she is attacked viciously for her opinions. The men that make up gaming’s target demographic went into a fit of rage at the first signs of popularity for Anita, claiming that if she wasn’t happy with the games then she should just stay away. This again shows just how exclusive gaming is, since they are unwilling to accommodate any form of critique or possible change into their world. Of course, these men say that their reluctance is based on the oppression of men brought on by these changes, simply because they are unable to identify their own …show more content…
To men, video games are a safe space in which they don’t have to worry about censoring themselves or their possible misogyny. Letting women in would ruin gaming’s sanctity, so they are understandably resistant to this. Women have even been banned from gaming competitions such as Battlefield 3 and Hearthstone, under the pretense that they are being protected from this misogyny, just to protect their woman-free spaces. Instead of accommodating women or addressing the problems with gaming’s misogyny, these competitions went as far as to change the rules and face a bad public image, just to keep the games to themselves. This reluctance for accomodation is also evident in certain sports games with female players such as FIFA 16. An athletic woman running around in a jersey isn’t easy to sexualize, so men were outraged when such games included real, nonsexualized women, even going as far as to boycott the game. Although their spots in the game weren’t being taken away from them, having to share the space with women was a disgrace to gaming and took away their rights to a safe space for men. In reality, however, they were just suffering from a lack of recognition about the privilege they have in the gaming

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