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Gender Display in Fashion Magazines Advertisements

In: Social Issues

Submitted By max3101
Words 1780
Pages 8
ZYM
Sociology of Gender and Sex
Instructor BAS

Gender Display in Fashion Magazines Advertisements
Introduction
Images in advertising that depict stereotypical gender roles and displays have long been a major concern in the field of gender studies. Before beginning research of gender display in advertisements, it is imperative to understand that advertising is a significant agent of socialization in modern industrialized societies (Kang, 1997), and is often used as a tool to maintain certain social constructions, such as gender. According to Rohlinger, the bodies in advertisements represent an ideal that individuals seek to achieve, and thus create the foundation for a masochistic relationship with one’s own body (Rohlinger, 2002). This statement is confirmed by the increasing rate of body dissatisfaction, greater weight concern, the development of eating disorders and lower self-esteem. Moreover, gender is a routine, methodical, and recurring accomplishment that actually surfaces in everyday human interaction (West and Zimmerman, 1987), and gender relations are learned through these advertisements, which essentially serve as a distorted reflection of the real world. These sexualized and stereotypical gender images are teaching the viewers a vast array of social cues, a certain way to interpret social reality, and are eventually reconstructing the definition of femininity and masculinity.
Various studies have been done regarding the covert ways that magazine advertisements construct masculinity and femininity. Assuming that significant differences in the portrayal of men and women would be found in terms of magazine type and its target readers, a content analysis will be used to examine and compare the selected fashion magazines to determine how contemporary advertisers define or portray masculinity and femininity to different readerships.

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