Gender Displays in Advertizing

SOC 101
7/7/10

I chose to use a vintage ad, mainly because of the blatant sexism that was prevalent in the advertisement I chose. This advertisement depicts a female hugging her husband because he just bought her a new Kenwood Chef automatic mixer, with the tag line, “The chef does everything but cook – That’s what wives are for!”

This advertisement definitely uses gender to continue the stereotypical roles of housewives in society. While there are both a male and female in the advertisement, the female is wearing a chef’s hat and dress, and the male is wearing a business suit, which probably implies that he brings home the bacon. In my opinion, this must imply that the wife stays at home, cooking and cleaning, while the husband works to support the family. I think that this is the perfect example of a stereotypical American family. While the picture itself is not completely blatant, I think the tag line is what makes the ad so sexist. Without it, you would just see a nice couple with an automatic mixer, but then the tag line, which basically says that wives are for cooking, puts the ad way out of line in society today.

They position the body of the wife so that she is hugging her husband from behind. This may also imply that the wife is dependent on her husband to buy her the mixer, and now she is grateful that it will be easier to make food for her husband.

I think that this advertisement, while it might have been okay at the time it was published, would not be accepted at all in today’s society. It definitely shows how much we have progressed as a society. And, while I’m sure there are still ads out there today depicting a woman in the kitchen, an advertisement this blatantly sexist would not be accepted at all in America today.