Two Ways a Woman Can Get Hurt

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In Jean Kilbourne’s essay, “Two Ways a Woman Can Get Hurt”: Advertising and Violence, she paints a picture of repression, abuse, and objectification of women. Kilbourne gives an eye-opening view to the way American advertisers portray women and girls. Throughout the essay she has images that depict women in compromising poses. These images are examples of how often we see women in dehumanizing positions in advertisements and how desensitized we have become. Kilbourne implores us to take the media more seriously. She is putting a microscope on society and showing that the objectification of women is acceptable. Kilbourne’s essay is directed toward a general audience and she does a great job of relating relevant and recent advertisements. She uses popular name brands like Calvin Klein and Prada that most people would recognize. This makes the essay relatable to the general audience that it is directed toward. Kilbourne helpfully uses popular brand names ads in the essay to show the audience how commonplace these images of women being exploited really are. The ads that she picks to scatter amongst the article are dominant and speak for themselves. There is a picture of a naked woman tied to a tour bus with only watches covering her privy parts. She looks petrified. In the

context of a magazine, this ad probably wouldn’t get a second look. When you are reading Kilbourne’s essay on how women are exploited and you look up to see the image of this woman, it creates shock value without Kilbourne have to say a word. It make makes a powerful statement.

There is another ad that the author shows, where three men tearing at woman’s clothes. One man is pulling her arm, another at her leg and the third man has her lifted off the ground by her derriere by pulling the waistband of her pants. The ad looks like it takes place in a back alley. If the ad were a movie, this woman would then be beaten and raped. The image invokes horror. The author does a...
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