The Portrayal of Sexual Exploitation of Men in Popular Media
Sexual exploitation is an issue that is often ignored when discussing the roles of men and women in popular media. The experiences of men and boys are often overlooked and their stories not discussed, in part due to the patriarchal foundation upon which our society was built.
In spite of this, there are some examples of the portrayal of sexual exploitation of men in popular media. Oftentimes, those stories serve as a reminder of how much work still needs to be done to bring awareness to the issue and empower male victims. Here are some of the ways in which men are depicted in popular media that raises awareness on this issue:
1. Including Male Victims in Portrayal of Sexual Assault and Abuse
In recent years, popular media has started to focus more on male victims in stories that depict sexual assault and abuse. Movies like Room and Boys Don’t Cry have included male characters who are victimized, highlighting male perspective in a way that has been lacking in the past.
2. Discussing Sex Trafficking That Affects Men and Boys
Some popular media platforms have also worked to create public awareness around sex trafficking and the plight of men and boys. The Netflix show Daredevil focused heavily on the complexities of this issue and is considered one of the best fictional depictions of sex trafficking.
3. Showcasing Intersectional Stories of Exploitation
It is also important to discuss how popular media has shed light on exploitation that affects men who are part of minority and marginalized groups. This type of intersectional storytelling brings forth a variety of experiences and issues that are not always addressed in mainstream content.
4. Highlighting Male Survivors of Exploitation
In addition to discussing the facets of sexual exploitation, popular media has worked to showcase the stories of male survivors. From documentaries to television series, there are a growing number of male survivors who are presented in popular media as a reminder of their courage and resilience.
The inclusion of male victims in popular media is integral to increasing public awareness on the issue of sexual exploitation, and to give a voice to those who have been voiceless for too long. We hope that the work being done to discuss the experiences of men and boys in popular media will continue to be propelled forward in the years to come.