(ThinkProgress) -- When Dr. Martha Lauzen started conducting research on women in film and television, it was the mid-1990s and, supposedly, a great time for women in entertainment.
“I kept on hearing that things were getting so much better for women both on and behind the screen,” she said. “But I was not seeing that when I actually watched television.”
A social scientist, Lauzen started to track “in a very systematic way, the percentage of female characters on screen and the number of women in key roles behind the scenes.” She found — spoiler alert! — that reports of how much “better” things were for women in the entertainment industry were, as they say, greatly exaggerated.
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Her latest study, “Boxed In 2015–16: Women On Screen and Behind the Scenes in Television,” arrives at a time at which it sure seems like women are rising in the ranks. Anyone paying attention to the television scene can probably rattle off a fleet of high-profile female writers, directors, and showrunners.