I have the most adorable little cousin named Alexandra, whom I love with all my heart. One day I was very disturbed when she told me that she was fat. She was 4 years old at the time. I was stunned and had no idea what to say to her, so I just told her that she is a healthy little girl and that she needs to not to worry about that. I tried to think of where she would come up with this thought, and after a while I remembered a conversation that her mother and I had. We were talking about how nice it was when we were younger and we did not have to work at being thin. Her mother said something about being fat and Alexandra must have been listening. This got me thinking about how I came to be self conscious about my body. I came to the conclusion that it is just something that every woman has to go through at least one time in her life. But why, what is it that makes every woman want "the perfect body?" I pondered this question for a while, but I was baffled. Later that day I began to read the "Cosmopolitan" and I began paying attention to the advertisements in this very popular woman's magazine; I was amused at the angle the advertisers use to try to get women to buy their product. One advertisement was for an alcoholic drink called Tequiza. The advertisement compared the calories and the fat content of that drink to the calories and fat content in another popular alcoholic beverage. I am under age, but I am a college student so I will not lie and say that I do not drink on occasion, but when I do drink I do not worry about how much fat or how many calories I am taking in. To me this advertisement was completely ridiculous and instead of making me want to buy the product I have now vowed...
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... by showing us how happy it will make us. They shape our culture by telling us that we want to be married because the people advertisements are and they are incredibly happy. They also shape our culture by setting the standard for the way we look. All women at one point in their life are self-conscious because they do not look like the models in advertisements. Advertisements are the reason why women obsess about their weight and the way they look. I do not know about most people, but I do know that I do not want to live in a world where advertisements tell me what I want or how I should look.
"Super Bowl Clutter." Editor & Publisher. Vol. 127, Issue 6 (1994): 6.
Signorielli, Nancy and Douglas McLeod. "Gender Stereotypes in MTV Commercials: The Beat Goes On." Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media. Vol. 38, Issue 1 (1994): 91.
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