Essay on The Role and Impact of Gender in Advertising

Essay on The Role and Impact of Gender in Advertising

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In order for two things in this world to be entirely equal, the two things would have to be the same. It should be inescapable; however, that men and women are not the same. The two have many physical and psychological differences that set them apart. Many would even go as far as calling them opposites. Are they really all that different though? Are we born with these traits that set us apart from the opposite sex, or are we overly influenced by society to think that each gender is supposed to act in a certain way? Like anything, there is a happy medium. A common place where we tend to see the dramatic differences between men and women are in advertising. Advertising bolsters the stereotypes of men and women and plays a very impressive role in gender beliefs in society (Paek 2011). Gender is represented in advertising today by the current popular culture that shapes the ideals and images we place on specific genders.
It is undeniable that men and women are portrayed differently in advertising and part of the reason is due to the objectification of women. The “women’s movement” has played a very big role in the significant social developments in the second half of the twenty first century (Artz 1991). This was a time when women saw themselves as being objectified and wanted to do something about it. They started questioning the rights of women and strived to be considered equal to the opposite sex in the eyes of the world (Sun 2010). This social and psychological movement, which began in the 1960’s, was a vital stepping stone for women as 1975 was even named “International Women’s Year” (Artz 1991). By the women’s movement assimilating more women into the workforce it greatly changed the way women were portrayed in advertisements ...


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...‘A meta-analysis of gender roles in advertising’, Academy of Marketing Science Journal, Vol. 38, no.4: 418-440.
Gould, S. (1987). ‘Gender differences in advertising response and self-consciousness variables’, Sex Roles, Vol. 16, no.5-6: 215-225.
Paek, H. (2011). ‘Examination of Gender-role Portrayals in Television Advertising across Seven Countries’, Sex Roles, Vol. 64, no.3-4: 192-207.
Peirce, K. (2001). ‘What If the Energizer Bunny Were Female? Importance of Gender in Perceptions of Advertising Spokes-Character Effectiveness’, Sex Roles, Vol. 45, no. 11-12: 845-858.
Sun, Y. (2010). ‘Do males and females think in the same way? An empirical investigation on the gender differences in Web advertising evaluation’, Computers in Human Behavior, Vol. 26, no. 6: 1614–1624.

Vinacke, W. E. (1957). Stereotypes as social concepts. Journal of Social Psychology, 46, 229–243.



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