Good The Naked Truth -- Advertising's Image Of Women: Jean Kilbourne Essay Example
1. There were many interesting topics covered in Kilbourne’s presentation. First, the use of advertising to shame women into buying products, such as “Honey, your anti-perspirant spray just doesn’t do it”. Kilbourne deconstructs advertisements to make them seem ridiculous. She also emphasized the powerfully negative and destructive role advertising plays in shaping the way women think, and men as well. The advertisement belittle women, portraying them as “vulnerable submissive sex objects.” Second, the section on photo shopping in advertising was sad. The digital manipulation convinces young girls they need to look “impossibly thin and flawless.” She also addresses the different way men and women are presented in advertising as they age. At forty-seven years old Brad Pitt is allowed to have wrinkles, while at the same age, Linda Evengelista looks like a computer generated science fiction robot. Finally, she focuses on the negative effects these advertising images have on women. They lead to depression, anorexia, low self-esteem and other serious physical and psychological problems. They can make some women hate themselves, just to sell stuff, which is a huge problem.
2. One thing I will remember is the really graphic sexual advertisements, like the Burger King ad. I’ve noticed this before and think it’s a weird way to sell food. Kilbourne calls it “a pornographic attitude” that is providing a form of sexual education for children. Also, just some the strange images, like the photo shopped women with a head larger than her lower body. I liked the video because it was a critique of advertisement that is psychologically damaging to both women and men. Often, advertising is watched without people really thinking about it. By really analyzing them you can see that they are preying on peoples vulnerabilities about the sensitive issues she talks about in the video, like beauty, gender, race and sex. Women’s breasts are too small, or they are too fat, or black women are not “white enough.” Even a male professional athlete needs to have his arms photo shopped for a magazine cover. If he is not fit enough, then who is? In the world of advertising, nobody is perfect enough because they always want to sell something to make people “better.” I give it five stars.
3. I do not have a television, but watch some shows on my computer. I like National Public Radio (NPR), particularly “This American Life” and “Radiolab.” I watch videos and movies online. I found a program called Hola, which allows me to watch the BBC and other networks around the world and from my home country. So when I do watch television, its interesting to watch that. I do not watch the fake reality shows I use a freeware program called Adblock because I hate commercials and advertisements. If Adblock does not work, I will not watch it. I can’t remember the last advertisement I saw, probably for a car company or a movie. The car companies always show people driving around on streets in a city, with zero traffic, which is funny. On a daily basis, I see some billboards, but my computer has literally blocked out all ads. I look at things on Ebay and Amazon, which are ads, but I get to choose what I look at. Before Adblock I would just avoid advertisements but would only sit through them if I really wanted to watch something, and even then I tried to ignore them. They try to sell me stuff I do not want. If I want it, I will go out and buy it. I think word of mouth advertising is more of a modern phenomena. I hear about a product from a friend or see it, and then I go research it to see if I want to buy it.
4. I learn about products from friends and family. A friend told me about some expensive shampoo which I like. My aunt bought me an Iphone, and I do appreciate it but don’t think it’s a status symbol because everyone has one. Its functional. I also purchase fewer high quality clothing because I think cheaper clothing shrinks in the wash. I used to buy clothes at Old Navy, but the quality is really bad, which is why they are so cheap. I buy quality over quantity with most things. Things do not really make me happy, but I like nice things.. I guess I am practical, but I think in general – advertising is trying to trick me. They have an agenda, so I prefer to do research on products. I am also interested in minimalism, because everyone has too much stuff. I try not to buy things to “feel” anything. If you could buy happiness or beauty or a good personality, then everybody would buy those things, but they do not exist.
5. I am not above the influence of advertising. However, I think I am aware that advertising is propaganda, and it is trying to manipulate me into buying something. So I make sure I really want it first. I am VERY influenced by comments and reviews left from other consumers about products. I read everyone and try to get a balanced idea about products before I buy them. All products have some bad reviews, but I can get a good idea about the quality of a product from online reviews.
Some advertisements for food make me really hungry. If I hear from a friend that a restaurant is good, I will go try it out. When I see beautiful homes with nice views I feel some desire, and can understand how real estate is a precious resource, but most of the products advertisers are trying to sell do not excite me on that level. I think some people buy products to feel good, fit in, or they use products as sources of status or identity. I am more practical, but I think I was raised to be distrustful of anyone trying to sell me something, whatever it is.
"The Naked Truth -- Advertising's Image of Women: Jean Kilbourne at
TEDxLafayetteCollege." YouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 24 Jan. 2015.