The Beauty Experiment

Superbowl Sexism?

by on Feb.01, 2013, under time

Soooo…..Big weekend coming up for those who love football and those whose eyes reflexively glaze over when they hear the phrase “first down and ten.” But everyone loves the ads, right? I mean except when they portray women as objects for consumption and men as unthinking dolts.

To bone up on what makes advertising sexist, take 12 minutes to listen to Caroline Heldman’s TED talk in SanDiego recently. It’s a great help in pinpointing exactly what irks us when we see these things, but don’t always know why we’re irked.

And then, keep your phone handy during the game. By tweeting #NotBuyingIt to any advertiser with a sexist commercial, we’ll be keeping them in line and responsive to the real American audience. Read more about the genius of this plan on the MissRepresentation blog.

If you are one of those media mavericks who don’t have a screen to watch or who might actually  step away from yours to read a book or take a hike or cook a soufflé…rest easy in the knowledge that  everything you miss will be endlessly analyzed and highlighted  in all the other media outlets later.

Enjoy your weekend hot wings/nachos/french cooking/pages.

2 Comments for this entry

  • Monia Mazigh

    Hello Phoebe, I am very much interested by your book and I look forward reading it soon. As a muslim woman who decided to cover her hair and dress modestly 20 years ago, I found your experiment fascinating and I totally understand it. The only difference is that I am considered as oppressed by the media and you are not. I wish you all the best. Monia

  • Phoebe

    Hello Monia, I am so glad to have your perspective represented here. In the book you will see how I sometimes struggled to reconcile the idea of exposing the female body as liberating with the reality of a culture that so often objectifies these bodies. I, too, understand your choice, and even wondered in the book if female co-operation might be enhanced by modesty. I’d love to know what you think. I haven’t been labeled oppressed by the media, but I have been called mentally ill… by other women.

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