New Ideas Addressing Old Rhetoric

2178 Words9 Pages
Sexual objectification occurs when a persons is viewed as a sexual object; their sexual attributes and physical attractiveness are disassociated from their personality and existence as an individual. People take no notice of the objectified individuals intellectual faculty, diminishing their function in society to that of an instrument of sexual pleasure of the objectifier. Feminist criticism claims that representations of women in popular culture are dominantly demeaning, humiliating, and detrimental. I posit that these views, especially in regards to advertisement art, the Dolce and Gabbana campaigns in particular, are antiquated when observed in relation to current western free-market society. To continue to hold tightly to this perspective of our society causes us to miss out on opportunities to celebrate milestones of feminist triumph. The anatomy and function of these advertisements are not intrinsically stifling to women but instead exemplify how commercial art can be used promote feminist concerns such as social and financial equality and right to express pleasure in their own sexuality. The situational settings of the texts exhibit an abstracted play on the diversity of roles for women in our world. In the ads presented here, women are often physically sprawling, with arms wide on hips and posture at attention in a militaristic manner. Women are giving directions, reaching, and often demonstrating power via the use of their physicality instead of their sexuality. They are portrayed as non-domestic, unsympathetic and non-emotive, cold and cerebral, though we the viewer do not know exactly what they are thinking. This is an intentional contradiction to stereotypical roles of women, a trope in use with clearly feminist t... ... middle of paper ... has no such option. The attentive responsible parent/ guardian have a duty to scaffold their children, monitoring what they are exposed to and translating for their children the text of daily interactions, making sure they are able to properly process the ideas they encounter. The children from Africa or South America now living in the basements and back houses of homes from Washington to Florida who are forced to do the everything including the mental banal, physically strenuous, and all to often the sexually explicit, are unable to see or talk to their parents have friends nor see their own true worth. These are examples of true objectification and exploitation, and when people evoke these terms referring to advertisement art while making social criticisms they do a disservice to those working to draw attention to those truly exploited and in need of help.
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