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Is This All We Are Worth- Tanisha Walton

Page history last edited by Tanisha Walton 10 years, 2 months ago

Tanisha Walton

September 29, 2010

Eng 1020


Is This All We Are Worth?


Over the years, we have seen many methods of advertising. From sex appeal to the use of athletes, these ways are used to persuade an individual to purchase a product. However, there is one way of advertising that should anger millions of people across the entire world. You may wonder why. Well, women are constantly objectified, whether being portrayed as a sexual object or as a victim of violence. In these advertisements, you will see that consumers are trying to be persuaded to buy certain products based upon sexual desire, control, or as a piece of furniture. However, this is a disgusting and negative way to portray women


              The first ad to be analyzed showcases a woman’s so-called ability to perform sexual acts. The Burger King “It’ll Blow Your Mind” advertises a “super-seven inch” sandwich. It shows the price of it and what it looks like. However, the product is not what grabs the attention at first glance. The first thing that would catch the eye of many is a young woman on the ad who has her mouth open. Seems innocent, right? Wrong. When continuing to look at the ad, the reader will see in huge letters the words "It'll Blow Your Mind Away" but “It’ll Blow” is much bigger. This is clear a case of sexual innuendo. How? Well, this ad seems to mimic a blow job, which is a sexual act done to a male, usually be a woman. The woman has her mouth wide open waiting for a “super-seven inch” to go inside. The female does not have her hands on the sandwich, which shows she is not in the act of easting it. Having “It’ll Blow” in a bigger text puts an emphasis on this sexual act. Perhaps the ad should say “She’ll Blow”.


           The Burger King ad appeals to pathos for men and women. Any woman who sees this ad should be appalled at how the model is portrayed. Sadly, many are not, which needs to change. With males, there is an appeal to their sexual desire. A woman who can put a “seven inch” sandwich in her mouth can possibly do that to something else. That is arousing to a man. I think a man who sees this as will be more focused on the sexual act than the sandwich. This leads to a problem for Burger King, whose purpose of printing this ad is to sell their new product.


            Another way of negatively portraying women is through being a victim or possible victim of violence. In the Dolce & Gabbana ad, five men and woman are featured. The woman, who is not completely covered in clothing, is being held down forcefully by one of the male models while the other four are standing or sitting around watching. This is a symbolism of gang rape. The female model is helpless. Though it is just an ad, it’s hard not to think of this situation in the real world. If this was in reality, more than likely this will turn into severely injuring the woman. The sad part about this ad is that the three other men are watching. That is sick, but it happens. The Dolce & Gabbana ad caused such an outcry that it was banned in Spain and France, two countries that are huge on fashion. It was also banned in Italian publications, whose magazines also show many fashion ads.


            Dolce & Gabbana caused confusion with this ad. While you see the positioning of the models, it is hard to understand what product is exactly being advertised, which makes it difficult to understand why exactly the company would position the models in this manner. It is not known if denim worn by the male models or the female model’s shoes are the products. Regardless of which ever one is the product, a better method of advertising could have been used. The male models could have been by themselves, and the same goes for the woman. Controversy and all of the public outcry could have been avoided. As stated by the Advertising Self Discipline Institute, the ad “offended the dignity of the woman in the sense that the feminine figure is shown in a degrading manner.”


            The final ad shows women being portrayed as an object, or in better words, a piece of furniture. The ad advertises Mr. Leggs slacks. There is a tiger rug on the floor. The model whose legs are being used has his right foot on the head of the rug. However, the head belongs to a woman, not a tiger. Under the pose are the words, “It’s nice to have a girl around the house.” on the ad, there is also wording at the bottom that’s hard to read. By zooming in very greatly, this obviously shows that the company does not want the statement read. A consumer would read very disturbing and unnecessary things. The first two sentences say enough. They say, “Though she was a tiger lady, our hero didn’t have to fire a shot to floor her. After one look at his Mr. Leggs slacks, she was ready to have him walk all over her.” First off, any man or whoever looks to this model as a hero is an idiot. This is not the way to view a woman, nor is this what we are worth. Secondly, as a woman, there is no way that I would ever let a man walk all over me because of his pants, of all things. Nothing materialistic is worth it. Once more women understand that the world will be a much better place, as long as men learn that being in control is not the way to be as well.


            Even though objectifying women is not my favorite form of advertising. I can unfortunately admit that it is effective and it will not be disappearing from the advertising business. Using ads like this appeals to the emotions of men. This could ultimately lead to more customers and a higher profit. That is the purpose of advertising and sadly it works. Nothing tends to come between making money. As the old saying goes, “Money is the root of all evil.” And in this case, that evil is the negative portrayal of women.


           In conclusion, advertisements that objectify women are wrong and should not be used. However, it is going to take more than this paper to make a change. As more people begin to gain understanding to this issue, these advertisements will appear less. Companies need to become more sensitive to what is going on in the lives of many people in this world, and need to stop only worrying about money. Many women in this world have been a victim of violence, have been in control of a man and have only been wanted for sex. As long as these ads are continued to be printed, and the mind set of those in charge does not change, neither will we, nor the value of one of the world’s most precious assets: beautiful women.



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