On the other hand there are many being on the opposite opinion.
Nowadays it’s becoming rife that commercials focus on sexuality, but it’s quite dangerous as they have the ability to confirm (or destroy!) among others the stereotype of sexual functions.
Sexist commercials can be divided into three major groups
- the motto is: sex sells! That is to say when only harsh sexuality appears and this is the only way.
- the other type is when only a part of a female / male body appears like a simple object.
- maybe the third one is the most popular, when we can see a man or woman in a traditional (~patriarchal) position.
These advertisements make stronger the classic stereotypes and help to still exist those archaic differences between males and females (a man is also able to wash the dishes after lunch, isn’t he?). As we watch advertisements we assist to the imaginative world to seep into our life. We start to believe that personal success depends on our perfect skin, shiny hair, dazzling white theets and of course on bifidus essensis. In this way we lead up to mental problems such as anorexia and bulimia.
A woman as housewife is the former stereotype in the history of commercials: washing powders, instant soups, nappy, etc but latterly women appear as a sexual object. Blissfully we can see male stereotypes: man with beer, man in the car, man with his chums.
By the way, does anybody think why is this so simply?
If we estimate what a woman wants and what a man wants we get the answer: a man wants a woman, a woman wants a man (I’ll try to disprove the latter part of the sentence a few lines later). Making an advertisement for a man is easy: you need a pretty woman. If she’s nice, you sold your product (or service).
But for women what are the important things? Romanticism, intelligence, power, just think about… it’s more complicated than commercials for men.
Advertisement corrodes the sexual identities, it turns into a kind of fashion and the boundaries between genders get more and more blurred so the products can be sold for both genders which is a double profit. But a woman still feminine if she wears jeans, drives cars or drinks beer whereas a man immediately turns into non-masculine if he pushes the baby carriage even if he cries.
I think Marlboro Man had been left alone, today a man only can be important if he has a Coca Cola Light but a woman can be valuable on her own (just remember for the commercial with a naked topmodell or the commercial of Christina Aguilera’s parfume). So today women in advertisement not only for ornamental usage. They use the product, and actually they buy them.
Advertisements are based on codes, panels and symbols. We have max. 30 seconds for decoding and the advertiser’s interest is to let the consumer catch the message, that’s why they need symbols which are often equal with stereotypes.