Not a Laughing Matter: Sexual Harassment as “Material” on Workplace-Based Situation Comedies

Not a Laughing Matter: Sexual Harassment as “Material” on Workplace-Based Situation Comedies In her book Sexual Harassment of Working Women Catherine MacKinnon (1979) suggested that “Trivialization of sexual harassment has been a major means through which its invisibility has been enforced. Humor, which may reflect unconscious hostility, has been a major form of that trivialization” (p. 52). In other words, making jokes at women's expense and treating sexual harassment as not serious have contributed to its persistence. Situation comedies can be seen as gauges for what is considered humorous in American culture. To explore the tone of and mood toward sexual harassment in contemporary American society, themes and content of “humorous” material on 56 episodes of five workplace-based situation comedies were examined. Results showed that although sexual harassment is rarely discussed on situation comedies, gender harassment is frequently used as “material,” which leads to further trivialization of a serious social problem. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Not a Laughing Matter: Sexual Harassment as “Material” on Workplace-Based Situation Comedies

Sex Roles , Volume 48 (10) – Sep 28, 2004
Loading next page...
 
/lp/springer_journal/not-a-laughing-matter-sexual-harassment-as-material-on-workplace-based-DAIrC3ZZsH
Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1023578528629
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In her book Sexual Harassment of Working Women Catherine MacKinnon (1979) suggested that “Trivialization of sexual harassment has been a major means through which its invisibility has been enforced. Humor, which may reflect unconscious hostility, has been a major form of that trivialization” (p. 52). In other words, making jokes at women's expense and treating sexual harassment as not serious have contributed to its persistence. Situation comedies can be seen as gauges for what is considered humorous in American culture. To explore the tone of and mood toward sexual harassment in contemporary American society, themes and content of “humorous” material on 56 episodes of five workplace-based situation comedies were examined. Results showed that although sexual harassment is rarely discussed on situation comedies, gender harassment is frequently used as “material,” which leads to further trivialization of a serious social problem.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Sep 28, 2004

References

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Unlimited reading

Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.

Stay up to date

Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.

Organize your research

It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve Freelancer

DeepDyve Pro

Price
FREE
$49/month

$360/year
Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed
Create lists to
organize your research
Export lists, citations
Read DeepDyve articles
Abstract access only
Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles
Print
20 pages/month
PDF Discount
20% off