Gillian Anderson: Sexism is so inbuilt in modern society it's sometimes hard to spot

Anderson rose to fame as Dana Scully in TV show The X-Files but was paid far less than her male co-star David Duchovny for three years

“Intolerable” sexism is built into modern society from the pay gap between male and female actors to the idea that a woman in a short skirt is “asking for it”, Hollywood star Gillian Anderson has said.

Anderson rose to fame as Dana Scully in TV show The X-Files but was paid far less than her male co-star David Duchovny for three years until she protested and was given the same salary.

Speaking to Red magazine, she said: “At the beginning, the pay disparity was massive.

“But that happens all the time in Hollywood. It’s ‘do this for me, I’ll get you a job’. All the stuff in the papers today about people in entertainment who have abused their position…”

Sexist attitudes are so prevalent, she said, that sometimes they were hard to spot.

 

“It’s built into our society. It’s easy to miss and it’s easy to get used to it,” Anderson said.

“There are things that are intolerable in today’s world, in terms of the perception of women — whether they’re vamps or vixens… the expectation that, if a woman is wearing a short skirt, she’s ‘asking for it.’”

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