The Portrayal of Women in Advertising

2734 Words11 Pages
Women – beautiful, strong matriarchal forces that drive and define a portion of the society in which we live – are poised and confident individuals who embody the essence of determination, ambition, beauty, and character. Incomprehensible and extraordinary, women are persons who possess an immense amount of depth, culture, and sophistication. Society’s incapability of understanding the frame of mind and diversity that exists within the female population has created a need to condemn the method in which women think and feel, therefore causing the rise of “male-over-female” domination – sexism. Sexism is society’s most common form of discrimination; the need to have gender based separation reveals our culture’s reluctance to embrace new ideas, people, and concepts. This is common in various aspects of human life – jobs, households, sports, and the most widespread – the media. In the media, sexism is revealed through the various submissive, sometimes foolish, and powerless roles played by female models; because of these roles women have become overlooked, ignored, disregarded – easy to look at, but so hard to see. In many clothing advertisements, particularly jeans and lingerie ads, women are used as the main subjects to entice the viewer to notice the ad and most importantly, be excited about the product. In one photo, Calvin Klein Jeans promotes its clothing through what seems to be unwilling, reluctant sexual activity – rape. The advertisement displays the woman resisting the man with the palm of her right hand, and she is pulling her shirt down to cover her stomach with her left hand; yet he is still pursuing her and attempting to remove her top. Her body language and gaze – devoid of emotion – reveal that she is not interes... ... middle of paper ... ...l 2015. 2) Georgia Institute of Technology. Carnal Commandments: Consumed with Consumption. Web 28 April 2015. 3) Joshi, S.T. In Her Place: A Documentary History of Prejudice against Women. Amherst: Prometheus Books. 2006. 4) Kilbourne, Jean. Killing Us Softly 3: Advertising’s Image of Women. Dir. Sut Jhally. DVD. Media Education Foundation, 2000. 5) Lumby, Catherine. Bad Girls: The Media, Sex & Feminism in the 90s. Australia: Allen & Unwin Pty Ltd. 1997. 6) Thilk, Chris. Sexy women don’t help sell to women. Web 28 April 2015. 7) Wanless, Mary Wanless. "Barbie's Body Images." Feminist Media Studies 1.1 (2001): 125-127. Communication & Mass Media Complete. EBSCO. Web. 18 Apr. 2015.
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