Sex and the City: Is it really empowering?

By Samantha Moore

Sex and the City has always been a favorite show of mine for some time now. I get so excited to see it on TV and relate to the characters in so many different ways. I love the main message of the show, which I take to be that women can behave however they’d like. Of course, the main theme of the show is centered around sex, but I draw a larger meaning from the underlying message. However, I cannot help but wonder that with a show that promotes independence and sexual liberation if it focuses too much on men and having the “perfect” relationship. There is a new man practically every episode, and the girls spend a majority of their time discussing their latest relationship or hookup. Don’t get me wrong, I really do love SATC, but for a show that is hellbent on showing women that they don’t need a man they sure do spend an awful lot of time discussing them. Just food for thought.

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3 Responses to Sex and the City: Is it really empowering?

  1. mediaphiles says:

    I agree that there is some sort that it is hard to make a show about women being able to do whatever they want and be independent, but also the show being so centered on their relationships with men. – Jon Baquero

  2. mediaphiles says:

    You bring up a very interesting point here. I too am a lover of SATC, however, you hold a strong argument that with a show such as SATC which highly encourages women’s empowerment, the premise around almost every episode is sex with men, or the lack thereof. I think that SATC did a great job of encouraging women to talk about their personal lives by opening up the dialogue on the television screen, however, an underlying issue arises which is the obsession over men when the show is supposed to be advocating for women to be independent and strong. As a woman, I feel inspired by Carrie and especially Samantha to follow the “take no bullshit” attitude, but is it wrong of us to look up to these four women when we see them beaten down and heartbroken by men too?
    – Eleanor Raether

  3. mediaphiles says:

    I think it would be an interesting study to measure how many episodes of SATC pass the Blechdel test.

    The Blechdel Rule is a simple test which names the following three criteria: (1) it has to have at least two women in it, who (2) who talk to each other, about (3) something besides a man.

    I think SATC has a healthy focus on sex that isn’t entirely reliant on men to drive or center plot lines. The show is about heterosexual women who have very active sex lives, and men are naturally going to be a necessary part of that. It seems to me as though Samantha has about 2-4 new sexual partners every week, Carrie is like one a month depending on relationships, Miranda and Charlotte fluctuate. It’s slightly vapid, but it’s supposed to make you think about sex and focus on that aspect of their lives. Lol I have a phrase, “slut praise!” I say in conversations when people start gossiping about peoples’ sex lives. I love how much the girls of Sex and the City sleep around :)

    Elyse Conklin

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