Social fill a specific role in wider society.

Social
expectations of women have changed drastically over the years and could be seen
as the change in rights and expectations. Changes in women within society started
after the second world war and became more popular within the last few years.  My aim of the investigate was to evaluate the
relationship between advertising and women’s role in society and within the
home as well as in general society. To achieve the outcome of this
investigation, I will collect two advertisement videos/posters from the
nineteen fifties and from twenty-seventeen. The collection of the analysis will
determine the results of my investigation and can highlight the changes in
society as well as within women.  The
evaluation will then be examined to establish a correlation between women and
societies views of women.

 

Literature
Review

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To
many, women featuring in advertising may take a back seat to other issues
experience by women such as the Gender Pay Gap. However, a woman’s role in
advertising is commonly unobserved by wider society due to the focus being
within the product being sold. However, women in society and within advertising
is argued by some to be used to maintain the social order and patriarchal
society which is currently experienced. Sociologists such as Bourdieu would
argue that society is experiencing a “social unconscious” due to the failure in
producing an egalitarian society (Swartz, 1977). Bourdieu studied society and
discovered that “cultural socialisation places individuals and groups within
competitive status hierarchies and groups in struggle over valued resources”
(Swartz, 1977). Rosaldo (1974) agrees with Bourdieu as she argues that “women
may be important, powerful and influential, but it seems that, relative to men
of their age and social status, women everywhere lack generally recognised and
culturally valued authority.” Previous lack of importance of women’s
independence and the lack of equilibrium between the sexes acknowledges the
idea of an idea of social oppression where women must fill a specific role in
wider society. This role in modern years has been expanded to maintain a full-time
job whilst also maintaining the childcare and family life.

 

Methods

The
role of media and the influence on wider society is an interest due to the impact
the media has. The replication of the view point within media over time can
establish and interesting study due to views being engraved into history.  By examining the image and video of the
advertising I was able to draw a comparison as to how women are used in
advertising to promote food items and whether it reflects the attitude of wider
society. By collecting two examples of advertising from 1950 (Figure 1, see
appendix) and 2017 (Figure 2, see appendix), allowed the observation that changes
in societies views on women and observe whether these traditional ideas of
women being at home were continuing in modern society. Hudson (1995) argues
that “industrialisation destroyed the family economy where work was centred on
the home, carried out with domestic patriarchal social relations”. This theory
accepts the changes promoted by women that societally is becoming more accepted
yet still remains incomparable to men as more end up in the primary labour
market. Hudson also allowed the idea of women joining the workforce allowed the
change away from a traditional housewife and towards economically independent
women who have limited the control of the patriarch. However, although the
observation has factual integrity, the evidence is based on one interpretation
of the matter which could not be generalised about everyone within society
today and then. Furthermore, in the influence of modern society and the
standards of equality within society could affect the interpretation of the
advert due to having opposite and challenging views of the role of women in
society.

 

Critical
Analysis

Both
of the advertisement, as seen in the appendix, contains the same project where
a comparison can be drawn. The subliminal message which replicates traditional
ideas of women being in the kitchen have remained within society today. Despite
the introduction of women into the work place and fulfilling “men’s roles”
whilst also maintaining the household and the welfare of the children. The aim within
both adverts, is focused towards women to purchase the product but for several
reasons including: to maintain the happiness of the husband and reduce the
threat of domestic violence (within Figure 2) whereas within figure 1 it is
used to think that the Heinz soup will benefit their children and their lives
in cold climates. Within Figure 1 (see appendix), the woman is responsible for
the child in the twenty second advert yet the advert is majority aimed at the
product itself. Figure 2 presents no man within the advert which can be argued
to be aimed at women to look after their kids which reintroduces the idea of a
patriarchal system today. Figure 2 and the use of the women wanting to please
her ‘bored’ husband as “most men have stopped beating their wives” highlights
the standards that men had for women to be and how they should be treated in
society. Although the advertisement is based on Heinz soup, Figure 2 introduces
two advertisements, with one aimed at cooking and with other aimed at
maintaining a happy marriage in the eyes of the man. In comparison, Figure 1
features the soup with the slogan “made with great” featuring as the only text
throughout the advertisement. The difference between the two figures
establishes the prominent sexist theme within the nineteen fifties (Figure 2,
1950) which is less prominent in the modern advertisement (Figure 1, 2017).
However, due to the change after the war and the beginning of women within full
time work, advertising began to replicate the changes and moved towards the
messages that are continued today. However, changes between the advertisement, signifies
that society has remained within a “social unconscious” state due to subliminal
messages produced by the media. Despite the changes in legislation to provide
women with equal chances (such as the Equal Pay Act and Sex Discrimination Act
of the 1970s), the perception of women remains traditional in many aspects of
society. The stigma attached to “stay at home dads” due to the defiance of the
‘masculine’ image enables the public to expect this process as the norm. The
norms have therefore built the framework experience of wider society today and
affects the newer generations in their understanding of right and wrong.

 

On
the other hand, the sexualising of both genders within modern advertising
highlights the disparities as well as the limited numbers of advertising
involving men and food without the model commonly being undressed. The
sexualisation of advertising has seen the move away from women being
subservient but a move towards the idea of products only being sold if the
advert contains an interest of wider society which refers back to an idea of
socially constructed ideas that benefit advertising companies. With the
introduction of a limited amount of men featuring in adverts containing food, many
could argue the society has seen the continuous exploitation of the traditional
role of females rather than changing the expectations that women have. The
reintroduction of women being within a kitchen and involved within cooking
maintains the previous socially constructed ideas of women as a whole. Despite
this, advertising in the fifties also contributed to the social expectations of
women and how they would be seen. Overall, women were seen then as a gender who
were unfit to fulfil masculine roles and who should do the “wifely” thing of
maintain the household despite having worked through the years of the war in
traditionally ‘male’ jobs. Overall, the expectation of women has been changed
yet there is still a gap between the genders that has not been challenged or has
been forced into changing.

 

Conclusion

In
conclusion, the advertising shows that the theories of past were correct as
society does ignore social ques left in media about the role of women. The
influence that media would have on society questions the ideals that
traditionally would have been accepted yet are being questioned in today’s
society due to the fight for equality. Additionally, the role of the patriarchy
is still prevalent in society due to males filling the Chief Executive Officer
roles whilst women are continuously overlooked. The idea of women maintaining a
job and caring for children still remains in media which is beginning to
properly be challenged. The role of women in the workplace as well as the home
has been continued yet the idea of being nurturing is continued in modern society
despite the change in policy involving the vote. Despite the rise in men taking
over the role of caring in the home and helping, men still control the power
due to higher positions and an economic advantage in wages. The advertisement
shows that there has been a change from obvious sexism in mainstream
traditional media but remains unobtrusive in advertising and media in recent
years. Therefore, in conclusion this report has highlighted the challenges and
flaws of the system which previously have been unnoticed and has encouraged the
idea of feminism which is still needed in today’s male dominated society.