Does it ADd Up?

Advertising has become a vital part of marketing in today’s society. It often persuades people to purchase particular brand-name clothing or expensive items even though it is unnecessary. Not to mention, these things could easily be purchased at a more reasonable price.

Abercrombie and Fitch

One example is this particular Abercrombie and Fitch advertisement. On it a man and women are supposedly being displayed in their clothing. However, it’s interesting that only the man’s face is actually visible and the customers infer that that the other person is a woman based on her physic. In addition, the man is sitting upright looking nonchalant, while also resting his head on the woman’s feet. The woman in comparison is shown lying down facing in the opposite direction, more towards the ground, with her head unseen in the advertisement. Already the set up of the models shows a distinct different between genders. In particular it hints at the fact that men exhibit larger power dominance over women.

Also I think Abercrombie and Fitch is trying to lure customers by including another underlying message. For example, the brand attracts women’s attention by choosing a young and fit man. The people viewing this advertisement mainly see his abs and not the actual clothing. Also for men you see the woman’s midriff enticing them to consider this brand. Similarly the brand wants to encourage men that they will be able to enjoy this same type of leisure portrayed in this particular advertisement, which is a false sense of hope and the wrong message to send about what the clothing will actually do for you.

This advertisement has little to do with the clothing of the brand, but more about attracting a particular audience. Furthermore, the company wanted to make such a statement about the people, since they covered the majority of the brand title. The company believes that people will be able to distinguish which brand this is and that they have a large enough following. Either that or they want to peek other consumers’ interest and hope that it is so interesting that they will spend the time to look into the brand.

Leaving me with the question, what are companies’ main reasons for advertising?

feMENism

I included a link in my previous post about men’s role in feminism, and I thought it was such an interesting perspective. When I thought about the topic of feminism, I focused on women and how they contributed to improving their own rights. After reading the article, I realized that even though feminism mainly revolves around women’s activism and how they advocate their beliefs, we tend to overlook men’s role.

Men offer support, not only in a relationship sense, but to help defend their spouse or even friend against mistreatment. They have the ability to voice their opinion just as easily. Just because they are not the same gender, does not mean they cannot relate or have a say on the situation as a whole. Often times, men know women the best since many are married to one or were raised by their mother. They can observe women on a daily basis in a more neutral environment. In addition, they add a different perspective to the situation. They notice small things that other women may overlook and every little detail makes a significant difference. Not to mention, men are more likely to listen to other men’s opinions. If men already do not believe in feminism, why would they listen to what a woman has to say?

I think the article had another good point that the environment people grew up with or live in now has a major impact on their view of feminism. Men who grew up with sisters understand they are not superior to them just because they are physically stronger. Instead men quickly realize their sister can be stronger in other ways like mental or emotional strength. Therefore, they grow more from the drive of one another’s attributes. Likewise, men who raise their daughters understand they must be more sensitive to certain situations because girls handle certain situations differently; however, that should not alter the fact that they deserve equal treatment to a son.

People have to remember women are not the only one’s fighting for their rights of equality. People have to look up and beyond the norm because people everywhere, especially men, have something to say.

Feminism

In the past, men would often associate caring for the children and housework with women’s roles in society. Likewise, women had become accustomed to that stereotype, and never thought to challenge that idea until the principle of feminism emerged. Feminism is a way for women to embrace who they are and enforce the principle that they deserve to be treated equally as men.

Over the pass century, women have gained more rights like the ability to vote and the opportunity to own a business. In addition, women have proven that we can be as equally powerful as men. Women have the ability to make their own decisions and to voice their opinions more freely. Therefore, women today are not expected to be a hundred percent compliant to their husband’s commands, but instead to reach a compromise.

I believe that every woman should embrace feminism. It reminds me how I am proud to be a strong and independent woman. While there are privileges to being pampered or babied by men, I do not want them to pity me or give me certain reprieves just because of my gender. I expect to be self-sufficient and able to provide for myself. Therefore, whether women want to be heard or not, the notion that we deserve to be viewed equally and have the possibility to voice our opinions openly is incredible. In addition, this principle has motivated women to think big and set high goals and standards for themselves. There are no longer limitations or restrictions on what women are capable of achieving. All women should acknowledge the fact that men cannot suppress them and if women band together, they will make a huge impression and inevitably alter how society views us. While not everyone can fully embrace this idea, I think with time more people will grasp the concept of feminism and accept that it is a move in the right direction.

Also we have to remember that we are not alone. Men too can embrace the idea of feminism and help to advocate the idea.

Empowered Women

When typically defining a women’s role in society, many people think housewife, caregiver, and cleaner, just to name a few. However, Sherry Ott has defied those stereotypes, proving that women can be as independent as men. Instead of just encouraging others to change their lifestyle, she has led by example, taking the initiative to transform her passion for traveling around the world into a full time job. While her timing was crucial to the development of her business, she has taken advantage of every opportunity that came her way.

She explained and went in depth about women’s roles in other countries. Learning that societies sometimes prevent women from being seen in public was a discouraging thought. Being hidden from the public seems demeaning since in the United States, we are all encouraged to speak up and be active. The pictures she showed helped to illustrate the dramatic differences between countries. It was refreshing that the Filipino women provide for their families instead of relying on their husbands. Likewise, in the future, I want to be respected for my decisions and to equally provide for my family.

With each experience she talked about, she made me realize that I need to break out of my comfort zone. I need to be thankful that I live in the United States and have the opportunities to even consider all the possibilities. I need to explore the world and get a better global perspective. She even made me think about how other women have furthered their lives by becoming entrepreneurs and doing something they are passionate about. Furthermore, she reminded me that every once in a while I have to take a step back to reevaluate what I want and where I want to go with my life. Even though nothing is every set in stone, I don’t want to live my life regretting that I bypassed an amazing opportunity.

Assumptions of Men and Women

Women:

1. Housework

Women do the majority of the housework even though they may have a job. This can range from taking care of the children, cooking and cleaning. However, this perception has drastically changed over the years.

2. Looking good

Women feel a need to always look their best.  This includes dressing up, wearing make-up and having their hair done. Failure to do so results in being labeled as a tomboy. In reality, physical appearance is not a requirement to be considered beautiful.

3. Behaving prim and proper

Women are expected to be on their best behavior: saying the proper things along with exhibiting excellent etiquette. For example, burping in public is considered repulsive for women but socially acceptable for men.

4. Emotional

During dramatic movies or stressful situations, women tend to shed a few tears. In general, they are more likely to openly show their emotions. Whether women are happy or distressed, people can often tell what’s going through their mind.

5. Gossiping

Women enjoy gossiping. They like to know what’s going on in everyone else’s life and keep themselves updated on current social events.

Men:

1. Physical strength

Men are physically stronger than women. Most men strive to have six-pack abs and toned muscles. In addition, they often spend their free time working out in the gym lifting weights or participating in sports.

2. Earning a higher income

Men tend to receive higher pay than women when they are performing the same tasks for the same job. In addition, men tend to get ahead faster in the work place especially in a male dominant work environment.

3. Handyman

Men are good at fixing broken appliances or home maintenance. Likewise I have relied on my father rather than my mother if I break something. In addition, occupations like construction tend to be a male dominated field.

4. Aggressive

When men set their mind to something, they never back down from a challenge. They always strive to win and dominate each situation. They don’t like feeling weak or vulnerable because that tarnishes their masculine image.

5. Protector

Men feel that they are responsible to protect their loved ones, especially female companions. If they are unable to do so or are weaker than their spouse, people will question their masculinity.

gender-gap

Additional article:

http://http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/03/24/female-breadwinners/2015559/