In the Blog

And since we’ve been talking about advertising…

November 28th, 2007     by Stacey May Fowles     Comments

Whether its Canadian Club or Unilever, the ad world is a pretty hostile place for women. Dare I say things have actually gotten better? The Daily Mail ran a piece today that included print ads from the time before “equality:”

And there is no doubt these adverts - many taken from the first half of the last century - reveal just how much women used to be caricatured as downtrodden housewives or hair-brained office girls.

The ads included in the piece are excerpted from a new collection, You Mean A Woman Can Open It?: The Woman’s Place In The Classic Age Of Advertising, and include some of the worst offenders, mostly appearing pre-1950. For example, this Pitney-Bowes gem:

I want to say times have changed, but this billboard apparently turned up on a roadside in Lockport recently:

The company’s explanation? “I think the mainstream understands it,” (the owner) said. “It’s unfortunate that some people are reading much more into it than they should.”

Us feminists, we just can’t take a joke? Violence against women? Ha Ha?

Oh my, how far we’ve come…

Tags: media savvy

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