Does Advertising Affect Self-Image

Topics: Advertising, Self-esteem, Mass media Pages: 3 (1116 words) Published: April 26, 2011
According to a writer from the Media Awareness Network, marketers are held responsible for "systematically creating anxiety, promoting envy, and fostering feelings of inadequacy and insecurity to sell us their products." While these marketers believe that advertising only "mirrors society's values" and alerts them to new products and bargains, they are either oblivious to their detrimental effects on society, specifically the teenage and female markets, or are ignorant to the truth. The Media Awareness Network evaluates the self-perceptions we gain from advertising whether it be false or strictly informational and the subliminal messaging we receive from these manipulators. The Media Awareness Network asserts that because advertisements are everywhere in our society, and they "sink images into our conscious and unconscious minds." We are psychologically flooded by the inaccurate portrayals of what advertisers consider to be "the modern woman" or "the modern man". Advertisers also present women and men with ideas that are not true- they flood their capacities with the ideas that their priorities in life should be getting a desirable man, or having the "perfect, hot body". According to the article, "Seldom are women shown in work settings, business roles, or positions of responsibility and authority... Our society recognized many valid roles for women, but this isn't always reflected in ads." The racial facet plays a critical role in advertisements, as "the advertising industry favors models with facial features that look Anglo, even if the model is Black or Hispanic." Looks and appearances play another important role in advertisements- as inaccurate as they may be. According to the Media Awareness Network, "Researchers have found that girls and women who work as models weigh 23% less than the average female their age. And the hips of an average department store mannequin measure six inches less than that of the average young woman." These...

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