Friday, January 12, 2007

A dangerous mix

There is a trend in advertising, in particular with fashion ads, to depict women in trouble or being hurt. To make matters worse, these women are depicted as beautiful and sexy, seductive even. The imagery thus becomes a glamorized display of sexualized violence, in which the viewer is told that it is sexy for a woman to be hurt or in peril.

Take a look at the following Louis Vuitton ad:

Louis Vuitton is the offender again in the next ad, which is guilty of more than one offense. It depicts only the woman's legs, turning her into a headless object. And again, we see the image of a sexualized (and thin, of course) woman in a violent situation for the supposed purpose of selling... what was it again?... yes, shoes. Sometimes it's hard to tell.

The violence and misogyny in the following ad speak for themselves:

And finally, an awesome article that discusses media depictions of violence against women and talks about actions the National Organization of Women is taking to end violence against women:

'Hunting Bambi': Violence Against Women for Fun and Profit?


Dohnaughtbreeth said...

I forget what it's called, but there is a government agency that controls standards of decency for movies. The standards change over time, but certain things are still off limits. Years ago a man and a womam could only appear in bed if one foot was on the floor. Now I think this agency does the R, X rating and under 13 thing.

There should be one for advertising. Degrading, or portraying women as objects for violence would be a no-no. Things have gotten out of hand. I'd include song lyics as well. If someone can't write a interesting plot or song without a reference to hurting women then they're in the wrong business.

Would like to see more examples of bad ads, since I never read womens's mags anymore - they're too misogynyistic.

Anonymous said...

It's important to note that the Bitch Skateboards ad is parodying the logo for Girl skateboards. Girl is one the biggest producers in the skateboarding industry. I still find both the physical and lingual violence very disturbing, but I thought it would be helpful to provide some context to the ad.

Nadia said...

that is very helpful, thanks. and yeah, it's still totally disturbing.

Anonymous said...

hi, new to the site, thanks.