Monday, December 3, 2012

Women in Advertisements

  I entered the Art and Women class with little knowledge about what it would be about. In the first class, when we were asked how many women artist can we name, I came to realize how few I knew. Among the many topics we've discussed about, the one that stayed in my mind was how women are constantly objectified throughout history. Women throughout art history were expected to follow specific gender roles and given limited rights. At the same time, women were also subjected to be an object of the male gaze. Depicting a woman as passive and available for the male audience to look at was a common theme in European oil paintings. For my semester project, I have written an article which discusses the representation of women in advertisements in today's society. Even though we think our perspectives have changed, a closer look will show that it hasn't. The advertising industry is still objectifying women by putting more emphasis on the models rather than the product or idea being sold.  

Here is the link to my article. Feel free to take a look at it. 



Chadwick, Whitney. Women, Art, and Society. 4th Edition. United Kingdom: Thames and Hudson Ltd., 1990

John, Berger. Ways of Seeing. London, England, 1972.

Dahlberg, John., Zimmerman, Amanda. The Sexual Objectification of Women in Advertising: A Contemporary Cultural Perspective. Journal of Advertising Research. March 2008. Retrieved from

Aruna., Kotwal, Nidhi., Sahni, Shradha. Perception of Adolescents Regarding Portrayal of Women in Commercial Advertisements on T.V. 2008. Retrieved from

Kilbourne, Jean. Beauty...and the Beast of Advertising. Center for Media Literacy. Retrieved from

Objectifying Women Not a Progressive Value. August 12, 2012. Retrieved from 

1 comment:

  1. I was talking to somebody and they made a very good point. We call it the make gaze when a woman is objectified, but what about women being objectified by other women? If you think it doesnt happen, go into a lesbian bar. You might be surprised at how similar the behaviors can be with some.

    So is that still a male gaze? And further, what about the visual of men that are shirtless in adds to appeal to women buyers? At this point, i think its less of a gender issue, but more of a religious stigma, about shame over our sexuality and expressing it in whatever way that may be.