Saturday, July 21, 2007

Body as a Tool

Although this picture is sexually exploiting the woman, it is sending the message that women can use their bodies to get attention in the classroom. 1.) This woman is represented as a tool, a tool to get whatever she wants, whether it be by her using her body or by the clothes she decides to wear. Her body is used to sell this product because it's sending the message that the things you wear determines how you will be heard. 2) I do believe that this ad is offensive to women because it is devaluing everything about them except for their bodies and the clothes that they put on their bodies. Although, I do feel that it is offensive I also feel that many may not see it that way. I say this because many people don't know or even understand the struggle oppression that many women had to face. This ad would be a smack in their faces because it goes against everything that they fought for. In the past, women were viewed as weak, only good for beaing children, and looked at as sexual objects. And they were unworthy of getting an education because of these reasons, so when ads like this exist it reinforces those old beliefs. I do not see this ad as sexy but as sexist. As I stated earlier, this ad is reinforcing old beliefs, beliefs that many may still have today. This ad is saying that women can only get attention with their bodies and not through their hardwork and determination and I believe that many feel that this is true. I have heard on a numerous of occasions, people saying that a woman only got that job because of her beauty and not her brains...well this may be true to a certain extent but their are many beautiful women in the workforce who are also smart and dedicated and worhty of her position.

3) I would have to say that this ad is anti-feminist for many of the reasons that I stated above. This ad is placing more emphasis on what the woman is wearing than the fact that she is in school (according to the ad) which to me sends females the wrong messages about what is important. To make things worse, this ad was placed at college campuses where hundreds of female students could view it. I think that women already have enough challenges to face in a male dominated society especially when they are trying to get an education, and this makes it even harder for them to succeed. In addition, feminism is all about uplifting women in general, informing them that they can accomplish and have the right to accomplish anything that they want and this ad is the exact opposite. 4) Advertising affects body image for women because it's everywhere and the images that are portrayed on these ads do not not represent the normal female body. And this is what is so damaging about these ads, they send the wrong message, which contributes to a lack of self worth and self esteem, which can contribute to an unhealthy way of living. I think that the advertising industry really needs to evaluate what they are doing and how it is harmful to our young population as well as to older individuals. So many women have been brainwashed to believe that they need to look like the size 2 model in order to be beautiful and that is not true. I personally feel that if ads are going to exist than their should be ads that represent everyone. I hardly ever see ads that represent women of Asian decent for example, this could lead these young women to want to be something other than Asian because they lack representation. 5) I think that the activism has to first take place at the industry level, by this I mean with the women or companies that put out these images. Many are aware of the affect that these images have on young women and because they are aware they need to make a change. I also think that strong women who are secure with themselves should play an active role in ending these ads because they are really hindering our young women, it is a shame that so many women have low self-esteem because of these images.

Remika Marshall

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