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Post-WWII Advertisements


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Slideshow of advertisements with analysis of their relationship to the American dream, the feminine mystique, and the consumerism boom of the 1950s

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Post-WWII Advertisements

  1. 1. Aprons inAdvertisementsShaping the Female Identity
  2. 2. “We Grow „Em Big in America”•GE advertisement for the new2-in-1 refrigerator and freezer•Title not only refers toappliances, but also thenuclear family present in theadvertisement•The husband is idly standingby while the wife is putting thegroceries away in the newfridge•Note the four children and thedog in the kitchen- the wifehas to look after the kids andtend to the dog while thehusband stands with thedrinks in his hand•Also, the four kids beingpresent in the advertisementsuggests that the wife wasavailable for her husband in asexual manner.
  3. 3. Dormeyer Applainces•Holiday advertisement for Dormeyerappliances•Asks the woman to select whichappliance she wants and if herhusband does not get the applianceimmediately, to cry for the appliance.•Asking women to cry for anappliance suggests two things: •Women are not capable of buying their own appliance and must rely on their husband to buy the appliances that will make their lives easier •Women can employ tools of emotion in order to get their way because women are allowed to cry and men do not want to deal with their feelings
  4. 4. GE „Push-Button Cooking‟ (1950)•The advertisement is forGE‟s innovative stove thatallowed for quickerpreparation of food•Notice the sparkling cleankitchen•General Electric ran acampaign for its ovens onthe basis of „speed-cooking‟ which allowed foreasier and quicker foodprep and clean up. Thiswould give women moretime to do other thingsaround the house as not tospend their whole day inthe kitchen
  5. 5. Kenwood Chef (1950)•Advertisement for Kenwood‟selectric mixer•“The Chef does everythingbut cook- that‟s what wivesare for!”•Shows the happy couple withtheir new appliance and thewife wearing the chef hat•The tag under above theKenwood Chef logo says “I‟mgiving my wife a KenwoodChef‟ suggesting that the wifeis unable to get her ownKenwood Chef•Giving his wife the mixer mayalso suggest that the mixer willmake his wife happy thereforehe would not have to tend toher emotional needs
  6. 6. Kenmore Stove (1971)•Sears Kenmore Advertisement fortheir new self cleaning oven•Oven makes cleaning easier forwomen as they would no longerneed to break „14 fingernailscleaning an oven‟•Also shows that the woman istelling her husband why she wantsone, demonstrating the woman‟sfinancial dependence on herhusband•The caption at the bottom reads„It‟s designed for you, but built foryour husband.‟ The dialoguebetween the husband and wife inthe advertisement shows thewoman talking about the cleaningaspect of the stove whereas thehusband is says that the „stove‟sreally put together right.‟
  7. 7. „Wonder Kitchen‟•Advertisement for GE wonderkitchen for Levittowns•Suburban culture shown inthe advertisement; levittownsconsisted of identical housesand features. GE usedlevittowns as a sort ofshowroom for their innovationsmade in appliances•The woman featured at thebottom of the advertisement isshown enjoying the features ofher GE appliances in her newhome•Also features the coloredappliances that GE introducedin 1954 to reach out to thefemale population so theywould be able to give theirkitchen „flair‟ and „feng shui‟
  8. 8. Alcoa HyTop Closure (1953)•Advertisement for Alcoa‟snew easy to open ketchupbottle•“You mean a woman canopen it?” Suggests that menwere responsible for beingthe muscle of thehouse, even if it was foropening a bottle of ketchup.The woman in theadvertisement seemsshocked by the idea of beingable to open her own bottleof ketchup•Also brings up the idea thatnew innovations in the foodindustry are accommodatingto the needs of itsconsumers, being thatwomen are the ones that willbe primarily responsible forusing this product
  9. 9. Mornidine•Advertisement for Mornidine-a prescription for morningsickness•“Now she can cook breakfastagain.” Suggesting that hermorning sickness was aninconvenience to thehousehold•Perpetuates the idea thatwomen belong in the kitchen•Also suggests that womenwere expected to do theirhousehold chores under anycircumstances; the woman inthe advertisement is pregnant,but she is still expected to getup every morning and preparea meal for her husband/family
  10. 10. “Choose GE!”•Advertisement for GE‟s newelectric range•Begins with “A Startling Statementto Women!” because cooking andcleaning the kitchen were long,tedious chores and with the newGE stove, they could accomplisheverything „jiffy quick‟•Displays women in the kitchen,even a young girl helping with thecooking•The only testimonials provided inthe advertisements are those ofwomen, suggesting that women arethe only ones that are going tomake use of the appliance•Ad promotes beauty not only inprice, but also in product as itappeals to women
  11. 11. “Easy to Stay Young”•GE electricadvertisement for theirnew innovations inhome appliances•Introduces the culturalexpectations for thehousewife to „stayyoung‟•Woman in theadvertisement showshow happy the wife is tohave her new GEappliances becausethey make daily choreseasier to manage