PETA has a well-established tendency to use sexualized images of women in their animal-rights campaigns (see here and here), but I thought this demonstration, in Memphis (and sent in by Elizabeth from Blog of Stench), is a particularly stellar example:
To protest eating meat, we have women in flesh-colored bikinis covered in “blood” wrapped in cellophane with the word “flesh” on it, as though they are slabs of meat on display in the butcher section.
Daniel F. (who has a blog here) sent us this Temptation cookie ad from Mexico, which plays on the idea that men fear independent, strong women:
Host: Gentlemen, what we feared has happened. You have the new Mexican woman; she is more independent and gives more importance to what she wants. First man: But, does she cool our beers? Host: No, never again. And that’s not all. She also wants us to take our children to the pediatrician. Second man: What’s that? Host: Pediatrician is the doctor for kids. Second man: No, the other thing, “children.” Host: Children are the little people who call us dad. Third man: And what is that she has in her hand? Host: This, my friends, is the new Temptation cookie, because the new Mexican woman has her pleasures without guilt and, what’s worse, she doesn’t share. Woman: Gentlemen, I’m leaving. I have things to do. Narrator: There’s a new woman and she has new cookies.
The ad also connects sex and food and, in fact, replaces sexual pleasure (and men) with food, a theme Jean Kilbourne mentions in “Killing Us Softly 3″–that women are encouraged to use food to replace sex or console themselves when they have romantic troubles.
It’s also interesting that the ad plays on the idea of old-fashioned Mexican men who expect women to serve them.
The website for Twix candy bars features an interactive video presentation in which you can “help” a doughy, disingenuous guy manipulate a young progressive woman (a blogger, no less) into a sexual relationship. At several crucial moments, the male character pauses, and you are given the opportunity to choose the correct action. The “correct” choices are as follows:
1. Pretend to be interested in blogging about social issues
2. Pretend to be nice to the woman’s effeminate male friend, but secretly overwhelm him with a masculine handshake
3. Be mean to the walking caricature of a Frenchman
4. Lie to the woman (again)
Of particular interest is that, if you pick the “wrong” choice, the video will then replay, showing you what you should have chosen to further the guy’s agenda. (If the video freezes, you can hit the “Pause” button to the left, then hit “Play” and it will continue).
I think the overall message to be taken away from the site is that women who blog are easily manipulated, particularly if you separate them from their readily-stereotyped friends and acquaintances. Furthermore, at the end of the day, what these progressive women ultimately want is a guy who represents danger.
Sorry, ladies, but the candy bar with the cookie crunch has spoken!
An anonymous commenter sent us this link to an ad (found at copyranter) for an Indian restaurant:
How bizarre/creepy/awesome is that? I really don’t understand ads that sexualize foods. Maybe I’m weird, but looking at the food on my plate and thinking about it in all kinds of sexual positions just really doesn’t strike me as the most appetite-inducing situation. Really, when it comes to food, I don’t want the different meanings of “hot” confused. I would prefer my food is of a high temperature only.
I decided I found this one sufficiently odd to put it in its own post instead of adding it to an older one. I wanted to share the fantastic weirdness, dear reader.
What is the relationship between the denigration of men as men and patriarchy? So long as we buy into the idea that we can’t expect men to be good partners or fathers, we will tolerate women’s responsibility for the second shift and their placement on the mommy track at work. So the Homer Simpson-esque sitcom dads and the Jackass teenagers, while incredibly degrading to men, also serve to perpetuate patriarchy.
…feed[s] into the sexist idea that men deserve a cookie for being halfway decent human beings, but it also denigrates men by suggesting that they’re animals, unable to resist any ass that that happens to pass their way.
In this series, I share my thoughts about why and how people of color are included in advertising aimed primarily at whites. See the first in the series here. In this, part two of the series, I offer examples of the inclusion of people of color in ads to invoke (literally) the idea of “color,” “flavor,” or “personality.” Consider:
This ad for Absolute Vodka Peach (“Find Your Flavor”) includes two white and two brown people, plus a set of silhouettes.
NEW (Sept. ’10)!Holly F. and Lafin T.J. sent in three Life cereal box cover. Notice that “regular” Life has white people on the cover, while cinnamon and maple and brown sugar flavors have people of color on their covers:
In this pro-diversity ad, the idea of “spice” is literally used to represent diversity (via MultiCultClassics). Just a bit misguided too: Just a teaspoon or less of color, please. We wouldn’t want the “spice” to overwhelm the dish.
This ad for Samba Colore by Swatch also uses a model of color:
“Welcome to the Color Factory.” These two ads for a color photo printer and a color printer cartridge both use models of color alongside white models in order to express how “colorful” their product is.
Bri a sent in these four images (three from Gap and one from United Colors of Benneton). Each Gap ad is advertising a different product, with an emphasis on how many colors they come in (bottom right corner). They all, also, feature models of color.
And, of course, the United Colors of Benneton is famous for its use of models of color in its ads, blending quite purposefully the idea of clothing colors and skin colors:
NEW! Joshua B. sent in this photo of two french fry holders, one with a black and one with a white woman, reading “never a dull moment, only tasty,” and “Is it wrong to think Arby’s all the time.” The black woman, then, is presented alongside the ideas of excitement and flavor:
This kind of advertising can easily be explained away as coincidence, but when you see it over and over again, such as in this Cystal Light ad campaign that repeatedly compares water to a “pale” white woman and crystal light to a “pumped” black woman and these ads for an Australian bread company that use Blackness to argue that their bread is not bland.
I think these two images, photographed at Office Max by Joshua B., also illustrate this idea. The white woman is “beautiful,” but the black woman has “personality”: