Almost every home product advertisement you can think of features a woman acting out a pretty stereotypical domestic role; you’d think all we spend our time doing was wiping counters and asking our rambunctious husbands and sons to take their shoes off. In the wake of the recent Super Bowl ad frenzy, comes this amazing parody video advertising a product called “Swiffle.” Bringing awareness to important subjects like reproductive rights, ... Read More
A recent Pantene ad titled “Labels Against Women” has sparked a feminist debate: is it okay for the company to use feminism to sell products? Some think that the use of feminism in advertising is a great way to appeal to the masses and to sneak difficult ideas on inequality and wage gaps into pop culture; the ad has been touted as a powerful beacon for women in the workplace. But others have been disturbed, claiming that what advertisers ... Read More
We hear it all the time: sex sells. And it’s true. As the art critic John Berger has suggested, advertisements are effective when they sell a fantasy: buy this product, and you will be envied by all. Women in both art and advertising are often posed for the male gaze; in other words, even if there’s a man in an ad photo, the woman is shown facing the consumer, promising to be just as attainable as the product she sells. Her body is symbolically ... Read More
In some cultures, religious talismans and sacred objects are kept out of the hands of women for fear that females will rob them of their power, a power coded as “masculine.” And according to Harvard Business School’s Jill J. Avery, ours is one of these cultures... when it comes to our worshipful treatment of the products we consume.
While it might be relatively easy for women to appropriate products labeled as manly, like ... Read More
Art critic John Berger’s text Ways of Seeing suggests that women in art are often displayed for the pleasure of men, tilting their heads and looking at the viewer with an air of suggestion and submission. There’s a connection between this idea and his claim that advertising sells fantasy more than it does products; ads seem to suggest, “Buy this, and this girl will want to sleep with you.” The objectification of women ... Read More