The Ad For American Apparel Giant Van Heusen The World 's Largest Shirt Company

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The ad for American apparel giant Van Heusen the world’s largest shirt company was created in 1952. The controversial advertisement is referred to as the Witch Doctor. The ad” claimed that ‘4 out of 5 men want Oxfords '. The odd one out being what looks to be a Native American or an African man dressed to appear like a Neanderthal. The blonde Caucasian image bears the caption, 'college and alumni tradition! ', while the tribal dressed man reads, 'rumor has it that even he would gladly swap his boar’s teeth for a Van Heusen Oxford!” (Elliot) The way the man is dressed, appears as something straight out of Hollywood, with the iconic bone in his hair. This man could be considered a caveman in a prehistoric cartoon. Consequently, the attire…show more content…
What happened because of each ad? Were there protests? Was the ad taken down? Or did the reverse happen, meaning did the brand thrive because of the controversial ad?

In 1952, this advertisement would not have raised any eyebrow, due to the culture dogma of the time. Some members of society during that era believed that the white community was superior to the minority community. Even though this is the era of the Civil Rights Movement, no one marched or boycotted Van Heusen. These types of ads contain subliminal messages. Surely, this advertising may have boldly offended many people. Nevertheless, this print ad was obviously effective. Without a doubt this ad persuaded the target market to buy the oxford shirts to maintain their predominant status in the social circle. Shirt sales didn’t decrease and Van Heusen is a major global brand in this era. However, critics have taken to social media platforms to complain about the 2011 Nivea ad. “One tweet boldly stated that "Nivea claims that black people aren 't civilized." Others called the ad "unapologetically racist.” "The company withdrew the 2011 advertisement after numerous complaints and released an apology stating, “This ad was inappropriate and offensive. It was never our intention to offend anyone, and for this we are deeply sorry. This ad will never be used again. Diversity and equal opportunity are crucial values of our company.” Nivea wasn 't interested in debating its ad,

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