The Pros And Cons Of Advertising

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Advertising has been around for centuries, mostly beginning in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The idea of advertising grew massively in the 1920’s just after the end of World War I when the roaring twenties had just begun and America was moving into a more progressive and modern era. As described in “Part 1: Happiness Machines” in The Century of the Self, this period marked a rapid increase in development of department store chains. Sigmund Freud’s nephew, Edward Bernays, and “father of public relations,” was told to “produce the new type of custom,” to advertise in a way that would “appeal to the masses.” The narrator goes into detail of how Bernays began to display advertisements next to articles in publications in addition to paying celebrities to sell products by promoting them as needs rather than wants. He then goes on to say how Bernays claimed to be the “first person to tell car companies” that cars could be marketed to males as “symbols of male sexuality.” This was done by objectifying women to sell the cars and displaying cars to flaunt a man’s wealth and success. To this day, cars are considered to represent masculinity. Both methods of marketing to a specific gender and using current celebrities for product endorsements are still commonly seen today. Two print advertisements that show these methods are a watch ad of NFL star quarterback, Tom Brady, in an ad for Tag Heuer and film actress, Kate Winslet, in a similar watch ad for Longines. Although these

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