Misogyny in GTA

Treatment of women in movies has received a lot of attention in the past 40 years. The treatment of women video games however has not received the same critical attention. What is the effect on the player who victimizes women for entertainment? How has a game like GTA moved with the mainstream with its potential for zealous and unmitigated aggression towards women?

  • This is an article which is begging to be written. I think video games have a more potent impact because the player is invested in the actions of the character, that seems slightly different that watching the 'other' in a movie. – Jeff MacLeod 9 years ago
  • I think to an extent GTA acts somewhat as a parody to this subject. The depictions of women are highly exaggerated in terms of appearance, personalities and actions. That's not to say that misogyny and objectification of women isn't true in the game series, but it should at least be mentioned that the games act as parodies and social commentaries as much as anything. – Jamie 9 years ago
  • It would be interesting to look at the culture that has developed around the game itself - like Jamie said, a lot of the misogyny in the games is intended to be satire of American culture. A lot of players of the game LOVE to talk about killing sex workers (and the media then criticizes this) but the presence of that ability is far from being a focal point of the games. It's essentially a case of the GTA community inviting these criticisms through their actions, and perhaps proving the satire's point. – Grace Maich 9 years ago
  • I had a friend talk to me about lucid dreaming lately. He was going on about consequence-free aggression. "You can do anything you want," he tried to tell me. I started thinking that rather than start to keep a dream journal and develop my lucid dream-scape, I could just play GTA if I wanted to do something without consequences. Ultimately, isn't that what we want from GTA? Freedom? But then, isn't there something terrifying about how easily we shrug off the mantel of morality? Ever show GTA to someone who has never played it before? What is the first thing they do? In my experience, the newbie will invariably punch the nearest person in the face. Then they want a gun. What does that say about us? Or is it more about the power of infrastructure and societal expectation to keep us from tearing each other apart? #randomthoughts – 12jm9 9 years ago
  • When I play GTA, I just drive around! I haven't played GTA properly, but the b-freind played GTA 5 in the background. With that one, there seemed to be more emphasis on the POV character saving women from crazy exes etc. In fact, I don't think you had to kill any women as part of the story - lots of men though. The main thing now seems to be that, unless you make your own avatar online, there are no female POV characters in GTA. I mean, true equality is accepting that women can be as equally violent and messed up as men, am i right? – Francesca Turauskis 9 years ago

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