Vietnam-era anti-draft propaganda from The Draft Resistance offers girls to pacifist boys.
From Vintage Ads via Jezebel.
Are these women being sexualized according to the norms of that time? I feel like I am missing a generational specific point. They appear rather dull to me and the setting is just weird.
I'm not sure if is a joke of what but that remind me this vintage campaign:
Yeah you would think they would have the girls look like hippies, but maybe that was the point: to have casual, standard-looking girls who would opposed the war. Sorta to broaden the anti-war movement. But doesn't the implications of this poster point to the issue of the disproportionate male/female population back in the days when men were drafted? It probably wasn't so severe during Vietnam but wasn't this the case in WWII?
The woman on the far left is Joan Baez and the woman on the right is Mimi Farina, Joan's sister. In Joan's autobiography she writes that she was trying to lend her celebrity to a good cause and claims that she was was taken aback by feminist backlash created by this ad.
I can understand the backlash.
Imagine if it said "Girls say Yes to Boys who say Yes" and was a pro-draft poster.... what would the response be to it?
[...] at El Forastero pointed out this vintage anti-liquor ad (found here) in his comments to an earlier post, noting they’re the old-school version of PETA ads that sexualize women (see here, here, and [...]
I think there's an interesting note to some of my fellow feminists' responses to this poster, especially over at Feministing . . .
Actually, I think the phrase "offers girls to pacifist boys" demonstrates it really well: there's a widespread interpretation of this poster as reducing women to rewards which some higher power will give you if you refuse the draft.
The woman-as-reward idea is not uncommon, but I'm not sure that our seeing it here is as much a result of what's in the poster as it is of the idea's prevalence elsewhere. A couple of things work against a woman-as-reward interpretation: the use of well-known, empowered women, the fact that they stare directly into the camera, and the presence of women's voices in the slogan.
In fact, women's agency is central to the slogan, and emphasized by the phrasing--we don't get "Boys who say no make girls say yes," or "Say no and she'll say yes," and we especially don't get "Say no to the draft and we've got some girls for you."
We get "GIRLS SAY YES to boys who say NO." It could be read as a threat of sexual strike, or an offer the women got together and agreed on. (Aside from attributing agency to the women, both of these interpretations also indicate that it's sex that's at stake, not women themselves.)
My interpretation is actually something a little more mundane: Rejecting the draft will make you more sexually attractive to women.
Of course, that's still problematic for a number of reasons, and could itself be the basis for an angry response. My question, then, is why do we go with the woman-as-reward interpretation?
I would speculate--and this is just speculation--that feminists are most used to responding to patriarchy, the domination of women by men. Patriarchy is the big threat, the most egregious, the one that demands our attention most often. So when something sets off alarm bells, we'll tend to interpret it as a proclamation of the patriarch.
In this instance, I think the woman-as-reward interpretation masks important aspects of the image, especially the role of women's agency.
[...] women have been used in a similar way, as in the Vietnam draft resistance poster that says “girls say yes to boys who say no.” In both cases, pretty and/or sexually available women are offered up as the face of a [...]
[...] post lembra, com razão, que causas de esquerda também já usaram este tipo de apelo. Uma coisa que qualquer um que tenha sido universitário [...]
[...] more posts discussing the impact of war on civilians, see license plate patriotism, sex protest, war is boring, WWII civilian sacrifices (carpooling and staying off the phone), war and [...]
This poster reaches out to the young men who didn't want to go off to fight in a war they didn't believe in, but who were under tremendous pressure by society to do so anyway. Any category of people could be used in this ad poster, such as a grandpa, but the most effective would be young women - as young men care more about being ridiculed and called a coward by that demographic than any other. It has nothing to do with feminism.
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