Analysis : ' The Dissent ' By Thomas Frank

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Conformity was once a common concept accepted by many Americans. Citizens were expected to participate in similar behavior, activities, and lifestyles. Advertisers used the desire to conform to societal ideologies in order to endorse and sell their products. However, during the 1950’s cultural revolution, Beats movement, individuals began dismissing the need to conform and began expressing their own individual endeavors. As the result of the rejection of collective conformity advertisers converted their strategies and began using freedom of expression as a ploy to get people to buy their products by promising them rebellion with said product. In the article “Commodify Your Dissent”, Thomas Frank examines the strategic ways advertisers…show more content…
Instead of promoting the usual conformed replicated lifestyle they promoted individualism. Advertisers reassured consumers that they would surely find the self-expression they were in search of within their products. This is evident within the “Forever Young” Pepsi commercial where present advertisers are promoting individualism through the image of rock n roll legend, Bob Dylan. In his essay, Frank states, “We consume not to fit in, but to prove, on the surface at least, that we are rock ‘n’ roll rebels, each one of us as rule-breaking and hierarchy-defying as our heroes of the 60’s, who now pitch cars, shoes, and beer” (Frank 153). During the 1960’s Bob Dylan revolutionized what it meant to be an individual. Through his music many people started to express what they were feeling and how it was affecting them and rebelled against the pressures of society. Pepsi using Bob Dylan as the protagonist of the commercial symbolizes the desire for people to explore what it means to be a carefree rock ‘n’ roll legend that lives life on a spectrum outside of the guidelines that society already has set in place. Bob Dylan’s purpose in the Pepsi commercial is to directly represent rebellion and individualism. This advertisement pushes the concept that consumers too have the potential to be as inspiring as said legend if they continue to take apart in whatever is being sold. Pepsi’s commercial expresses that conformity is no longer

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