Gender Norms in Advertising

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In modern society, advertising is used as a powerful tool to communicate a message. But it is more than simply selling a product. Advertisers not only just sell products, they sell ideals, values and normalcy. They also help to create or express consumers' identity, including gender (Van den Bulck, Van Hellemont 623). Gender roles are defined as the behavioural patterns indicating to others you are a male or a female. In other word, this is also linked to masculinity and femininity. In North America, advertising labels masculinity with traits such as dominance, assertiveness and independence. In contrast, we have femininity in which advertising labels as passive, beautiful and co-dependant. These two images advertisers try to paint normalize the stereotypes of different gender roles. Different companies use different strategies to sell products and encourage consumers to part with their hard earned money. Advertising reinforces particular gender norms. Through an analysis of a case study of anti-aging cream aimed towards women, this paper will argue that all advertising fundamentally plays on dominant ideologies to make people believe that in order to be “normal” or “successful”, they must buy product X. In particular, it will focus on how dominant norms surrounding masculinity and femininity are encouraged. These norms suggest what is considered an acceptable male and female appearance. It will also focus in particular on gender norms which female attractiveness is above all else, while men are valued for their other characteristics. The following case study is on the analysis of women and the use anti-aging products. Growing old is a way of life, but for women in modern society it is a grim reality, the aging process cannot be stopped, but thanks to anti-aging adverts, it leaves the impression that the aging process can be slowed down. Today there are several

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