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Silencing Gender: 5 Hour Energy Ads Essay

1801 words - 8 pages

Silencing Gender5-Hour Energy Ad: "Last 5 Hours"Silencing Gender PaperSeptember 22, 2014Advertisements in the media are designed to grab the viewer's attention at all costs, even if the price is the objectification and degradation of women and men. For this paper, I will be focusing on how women are negatively portrayed in a particular 5-Hour Energy advertisement and how this type of communication affects society's views of gender. I will start by introducing three concepts from my textbook that I used to evaluate and analyze my artifact. I will then explain the advertisement in question and give a detailed analysis, incorporating and applying the concepts I chose to use. Lastly, I will ...view middle of the document...

When children mimic negative stereotypes expressed in the media, they can often get stuck thinking that these are realities.Cognitive development theory assumes children play active roles in developing their gender identities by picking models of competent masculine or feminine behavior (Wood, 2011). The theory focuses strongly on gender consistency which is when a person understands that he or she is male or female, starting as young as age three.ArtifactWomen in the United States have been fighting an uphill battle for equality since the monumental Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 and are still fighting the good fight today in 2014. The difference between then and now is that they are not fighting for equal rights, but instead they are fighting to change the negative stereotypes that have been perpetuating year after year in the mass media. For example, the "Last 5 Hours" advertisements show what people accomplished after taking a 5-Hour Energy shot. I ran across this ad while I was watching television the other night, but I didn't think anything of it until my girlfriend pointed out how sexist it was. When I decided to do my paper on this particular ad, I YouTube'd it and found that there were two sets of commercials, one for men and one for women.The first ad I watched showed a woman at her house taking care of her daughter, cleaning, and accomplishing numerous tasks around the house while actually using the term "housekeeper" three times (This is the ad I will be focusing on). The second ad, geared towards men, showed a man playing golf, learning Spanish, skydiving, learning to play the guitar, and writing a novel. After watching both ads I realized just how poorly 5-Hour Energy represented the American women. It's stating that women are only capable of doing things around the house, but men are able to be "super-human" and conquer anything they put their mind to in only five hours.AnalysisPeople watching televisions are viewing these ads, consciously and/or subconsciously, on a daily basis while not thinking to question the underlying stereotypes within them. This creates a socially constructed reality where women are supposed to be the typical "housewife" and men are suppose to be the "head of household" and "bread winner" of the family. Even if this type of reality goes against what someone believes to be true, it's still a constant reminded that this is what society deems as a normal household.This is a clear representation of standpoint theory as well as social learning theory. Standpoint theory is represented when 5-Hour Energy chose to portray the woman in the ad as a housewife and a caregiver. Viewers recognize this as a group and in order to be a member you must do the things represented within the ad. Social learning theory can be applied because when female viewers, especially children, watch this they might believe that all women are like this and in order to be normal, they must fit into this stereotypical role.Advertisements...

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