A few months ago, I was reading one of my favourite blogs – Mummedia – which discusses consumerism and advertising amongst other things.. and I saw an image that would rile me up so much I would write to the company.
Nothing I love more than seeing a barcoded girl (is she a product?!) who looks 14 (she could be older, granted, but she looks very young to me) with a big wide open mouth with an image filling it and a vacant stare and hands set in a youthful heart shape being used to sell clothes to men.
The images we see in shops are usually aspirational, what does this say that young teenage girls should aspire to be in order to please men?
I wrote to Roger David about my concerns as to the imagery used for this campaign… to no reply. None.
Awesome. Guess where I will never shop?
I have avoided generally the strong feminist line, I don’t want to seem too feisty or prudish. But surely somewhere we have to analyse the images we are exposed to and what the motivation is for using them to sell products. I have a marketing degree, I know that advertising campaigns are successful or they are dropped. So this imagery might work, but that doesn’t actually mean its okay.
I think we have to be careful what we become numb to…
When I had a son, I was definitely concerned by these issues and how I would address his view of women being counter-cultural to those portrayed in our media. Now I have a daughter, I am really trying to be more aware. More aware of what is going on in our culture, and how I can both influence this and most importantly how we can raise both of our children to find their value not in stuff, coolness, sexuality but in their love and compassion for others, their desire to contribute to society and for their uniqueness made in the image of God.
I am trying to look through more childlike, more wondering, less numbed eyes at the world… and to see what messages it is giving me? What things it is challenging me to just accept?
What do you think?