Friday, May 23, 2008
Does sex really sell?
Sex has always been used by advertisements executives to help sell their products. Big companies in America stickily follow the philosophy that "sex sells all products". This philosophy is seen not only in the advertising of items that are targeted for men, but also in those that are made specifically for women. In most of these ads, whether the product is for men or women, more often than not, it is the women in the ad that are objectified as sex objects. When people say that sex sells, what they really are saying is that objectifying one sex, usually the female sex, sells products.
Today almost any ad that a person looks at contains some representation of sex. Beer ads say if you, men, drink this beer, hot women like the ones pictured in the ad will chase after you, hair care products use slogans such as "she went all the way" and others that have very obvious sexual undertones. "Sexuality provides a resource that can be used to get attention and communicate instantly." (Jhally,253) Sexuality is such a prevalent thing in ads not only because we as a society seem to be acceptant of it, but also because it is an easy and obvious way to make people pay attention to the advertisement. Even if a person might not consciously remember the naked woman in an add, they do remember the commercial, especially when it comes time for them to buy a certain product.
Many people say that they are sick of these ads and how they portray women, but yet, there is little being done to bring about a change. While it might be too difficult to set about trying to change the mentality of the male population, women can at least start by trying to change what they accept from the ads targeted towards them. "As long as a woman viewed her body as an object, she was controllable and profitable."(Hesse-Biber 40) If women simply see their bodies as objects, why should men see them any differently? And for that matter, why should they not objectify women and use sex and sexuality in all their advertisement?
Hesse-Biber, Sharlene. "Men and Women: Mind and Body." The Cult of Thinnes. New York: Oxford UP, 2006. 33-60.
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