AJBCOB | Mass Media Effects

Title

Sex Sells: Exploring the Portrayal of Women in Media

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Sophomore

Major

Advertising

Minor

N/A

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Bellarmine Ezumah

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Sex Sells: Exploring the Portrayal of Women in Media

This project analyzed the idea of “sex sells.” In movies, in song lyrics, in music videos, in shows, and even in commercials, women are often used as a marketing tool. This portrayal implies that a woman’s image makes up her worth. This potentially has two effects. First, it gives men a distorted, exaggerated, and inaccurate view of women, depicting them as sexual objects for their gratification. Secondly, it gives women unrealistic expectations for their own bodies, making them feel inadequate or ashamed for not reflecting the “beauty” they see in the media.

This research project used Hardee’s Bacon 3-Way Thickburger commercial as an example. It features three blond women feeding each other bacon, in an obvious reference to a threesome. This commercial presented women as sexual objects, and the sameness of the women only represents a certain way to be “desireable” (white, skinny, blonde). By using surveys, this project discovered how men, women, and minorities view this commercial and how it affected their opinion of Hardee’s and of women. This project analyzed the implications of using women as marketing tools.

Key words:

  • Media

  • Stereotypes

  • Marketing

  • Advertisment

  • Sexism

  • Women

  • Body image

  • Diversity

Location

South Lobby, Waterfield Library

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Affiliations

JMC330

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Nov 17th, 1:30 PM Nov 17th, 3:30 PM

Sex Sells: Exploring the Portrayal of Women in Media

South Lobby, Waterfield Library

Sex Sells: Exploring the Portrayal of Women in Media

This project analyzed the idea of “sex sells.” In movies, in song lyrics, in music videos, in shows, and even in commercials, women are often used as a marketing tool. This portrayal implies that a woman’s image makes up her worth. This potentially has two effects. First, it gives men a distorted, exaggerated, and inaccurate view of women, depicting them as sexual objects for their gratification. Secondly, it gives women unrealistic expectations for their own bodies, making them feel inadequate or ashamed for not reflecting the “beauty” they see in the media.

This research project used Hardee’s Bacon 3-Way Thickburger commercial as an example. It features three blond women feeding each other bacon, in an obvious reference to a threesome. This commercial presented women as sexual objects, and the sameness of the women only represents a certain way to be “desireable” (white, skinny, blonde). By using surveys, this project discovered how men, women, and minorities view this commercial and how it affected their opinion of Hardee’s and of women. This project analyzed the implications of using women as marketing tools.

Key words:

  • Media

  • Stereotypes

  • Marketing

  • Advertisment

  • Sexism

  • Women

  • Body image

  • Diversity