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MISUSE OF WOMEN IN ADVERTISING

MISUSE OF WOMEN IN ADVERTISING  

 Dr. S. S. Dosanjh

Boccacio the famous Italian writer once said, "This world belongs to men but then men belong to women."  lt is a well proven and well established fact that men who seem to be rulers of the world are actually ruled even though unconsciously sometimes ,by women.Manufacturers and their advertisers have caught hold of this fact and they make use of female sex appeal to sell their wares of every kind. Women models are shown in various poses and positions sometimes curved like blade to cut and conquer the male heart. And to allure him to buy any article. lt is seen sometimes even a worthless thing, with hardly Any practical use, is sold quickly and in large quantities if it, is recommended by a bewitching beauty in a dress which reveals more than it conceals in a catchy advertisement. S.S. DOSANJ  in this article criticizes the exploitation of female sex-appeal by the manufacturers to persuade men to buy their goods.
  Advertising has acquired powerful role in the twentieth century world. Advertising includes those activities by which visual, oral or written messages are addressed to the public for the purpose of influencing it either to buy goods or to mould its opinion in favour of certain items, ideas, institutions or per sons. The power of advertising is so great that it can persuade the people to do what, some times, they don’t want to do. It can create a demand and can sell goods which are not necessities of life. lt can lure people to buy luxury goods at the cost of their basic needs.
Before the industrial revolution when goods were produced on demand and to meet the needs of local and known consumer advertising had a title role to play. The industrial revolution  resulted in mass production . Because of the mass production and  competition  in the market it became imperative for the producers to inform educate and persuade the consumers to buy their products. lt could be for the producers to inform done through advertising only.
 The growth of advertising in India has been quite phenomenal in the last two decades. A large number of advertising agencies have come up during this period. Today advertising in itself has become an industry. Generally the advertiser prefers to use the appeal that will be effective with the majority of his prospective buyers. Some of the important appeals " used by advertisers are comfort, fear, pleasure, appetite and sex. The last appeal has been widely used by the advertisers to attract the attention of the people and to boost the sale of their products. Basically, the idea behind employing the female models in advertisements is to take advantage of the sex appeal for attracting the attention of the potential buyers.
The use of young female models with mystery and al lure attached to sqx appeal, in eye-catching visuals, is the most tempting bait that advertiser  have resorted to. See any magazine and you will be greeted with an assortment of dazzling faces, flashing smiles, alluring curves and breathtaking captions, promoting various products. Beautiful female forms are spread over ihe advertisements in different stages of undress or suggestive poses to sell all kinds of products. The moral standards of the people being what they are, advertising has come to be known as a "pretty girl" industry. ln all most all the advertisements .for different bathing soaps a young woman’s body is exposed. Various cold drinks are being advertised by seminude girls at their sexiest. The purpose is to catch the attention of the public and force them to look at the product brand.
The use of sex appeal in advertisements is hardly new, what is new is the intensity of such appeals and the increasing number and the variety of products being marketed with sexual overtones. The advertisements appearing in the print media with young women as models tend to convey that new generation women, in plenty, are available for such a purpose. lt is not just the products with direct utility to women which project this attitude but even articles essentially for the use of men also make great use of this trend. Advertisements for men’s products like suitings, shirtings, shaving blades, aftershave lotions have consistently used women models as props hinting that a brand conscious man can fave his pick of a beautiful womans recommendations. lt is not uncommon to see a girl cuddling up suggestively to a man while he with emphasized masculine arrogance, smokes a :particularly ""n3; launts a shirtin



g-suitings of r particular brand name.
The reasons for employing women as models in advertisements could be to gain product recognition  and to promote sales. lt is believed that in a sex starved society like ours a significantly greater number of brand names can be re called when a female model is depicted in a charming pose in an advertisement. Sex illustrations can arouse such an interest that the reader is forced to look at the product brand. lt fulfils the primary function of advertisement which is, catching the attention of the potential buyers.
ln a capitalist society individuals are reduced to a commodity. People like products, serve a certain purpose and so have a certain price. Women are worst hit by this approach. But now when it is faced with a staggering economic crisis it has very subtly used women to sell its commodities. Their physical charms have been exploited to the extreme.
 Women in this society do not hold any more importance than that of beautiful and attractive tools, effectively used in the sale promotion of a product. The economic crisis drives the producers, manufacturers or distributors to use such means to promote their sale and profit for surviving the market competition.

 There are surely other ways also to attract attention.

 
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