Analysis of Erving Goffman´s Gender Advertisements Essay examples

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In this analysis, the author examines the staging of male and female subjects in visual discourse by deconstructing advertisements that involve gendered subjects, examine gender on an institutional level, and look at gender as a performance. Advertisements are the most conventional ways to portray commercial realism, something that could be real because they don’t look peculiar or weird- they look normal. The big question asked by Erving Goffman, author of the book, “Gender Advertisements” is why do these advertisements not look strange to us when in fact they really are (Jhally)?
Gender is a learned social construction on what you do. It is a cultural system based on the binary opposition of men and women but there are also variations
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In this analysis, the author examines the staging of male and female subjects in visual discourse by deconstructing advertisements that involve gendered subjects, examine gender on an institutional level, and look at gender as a performance. Advertisements are the most conventional ways to portray commercial realism, something that could be real because they don’t look peculiar or weird- they look normal. The big question asked by Erving Goffman, author of the book, “Gender Advertisements” is why do these advertisements not look strange to us when in fact they really are (Jhally)?
Gender is a learned social construction on what you do. It is a cultural system based on the binary opposition of men and women but there are also variations such as transgendered, homosexuals, and queer individuals as well (Cook-Gumperz, Jenny 291-307). In our society we sometimes confuse sex and gender as the same thing. Sex is biological and is pinpointed by an organ/physical aspect whereas gender is constructed through interaction of interpersonal and institutional practices (DeFrancisco and Palczewski). The male/female relationships in ads are quite different than what they are in reality. Females are being treated as children, they never leave girlhood behind in these images or in the way they act. Males on the other hand are the adults or the parents, more mature and grown up. Goffman supports his arguments through a selection of images that show gender relation in advertising. For example,
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