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New Spice

By | Feb. 2013
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Gender criticism investigates by what means sexual character effects not only the formation of, but the insight of a piece. Gender criticism started with the beginning of the women's movement, which eventually pursued to uncover the male subjugated norms of literature. The “text” touched on gender issues throughout the entirety of the Old Spice commercial. Isaiah Mustafa plays an attractive man, who attempts to comically seduce his audience (mainly women) into purchasing a product for personal use. The text portrays men as masculine and only desired by women if they purchase the product that’s being sold. It also depicts woman as weak in matters of being told what to do by men essentially by hypnosis and/or bribery. There is a sense of dependence and inferiority as a woman, but also a form male inferiority because the commercial is underhandedly stating that you are not a man if you fail to purchase this product. Lastly, this “text” portrays sexuality as objective and dispensable. There is no problem with laughing at the commercial, but if someone with little self-esteem took this commercial to the extent that it was being projected, there would definitely be a plethora of false expectations (i.e. tickets, diamonds, etc.) and hurt feelings/egos. Sociohistorical criticism is literary criticism in the light of historical evidence or based on the context in which a work was written, including facts about the author’s life and the historical and social circumstances of the time. This is in contrast to other types of criticism, such as textual and formal, in which emphasis is placed on examining the text itself while outside influences on the text are disregarded. The “text” portrays class in an unrealistic fashion. The way that Isaiah is speaking (English context/accent) in a strong male tone with the added cinematic choices (i.e. white horse, diamonds, tickets etc.) all leave me with this high expectation of life choices and feeling of insufficiency....
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