Critical Thinking in Sociology

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The media is the world’s means to communication. Through the use of magazines, television, the internet, radios, billboards, etc., we are able to sell, advertise, and publicize materials and goods. The media has a way of eliciting, in consumers, a desire and need to obtain whatever is being advertised. The mass media is mainly ruled by an exclusive portion of our society; these elite few have the power to manipulate and capitalize on the profits made from the media. The main marketing technique the media uses is called subliminal messaging. Through the use of slight manipulations, the media appeals to our pleasure telling us that what they are offering is a necessity rather than a luxury. Not only does the media generate a selfish desire in the consumer for material goods, it also subtly suggests that they have more to offer than what meets the eye. For instance, if you buy a certain product you will: look a certain way, gain more friends, be happier, have more sex appeal as a woman, or have more power as a man. The item being sold is generally not the only thing being put on the market. The media sells sex, it sells an image, it sells a message, and it sells ideas about male and female roles. There are several examples of these underlying messages that can be found in the media. In many ads, women are generally portrayed as sex objects with the perfect body, hair, skin, teeth and makeup; and men are often seen as mysterious, silent, and powerful. In a recent shoe advertisement that I saw, there was a women standing in the forefront of the advertisement. She was wearing a short dress, high heels, her face and body were airbrushed, and there was a large lineup of men who were falling over one another to get to the woman for miles. This is just one example of how warped our society is when it comes to the media. The world of media does not portray an accurate reality, but it has shaped our reality by twisting our brains to believe that we can live like the people...
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