I spend a lot of time thinking about women in advertising.
the depiction of them, gender roles, airbrushing, what “real” women look like. there always seems to be a lot of buzz surrounding women in advertising — and for good reason. women dominate the purchasing power of the u.s. economy, so it only makes sense that advertising show women what they want to see.
during my visit to the museum of science and industry last week, I was able to stroll through the u-505 submarine exhibit. I found the navy posters lining the hallways of the exhibit most fascinating.
forget the history-making videos, hands-on opportunities and information about the infamous german submarine ship — look at the (now) unbelievable calls to action for women to join the navy.
“enlist in the waves, release a man to fight at sea”
“have you got what it takes to fill an important job like this?
“there’s a man-size job for you in the navy”
hilarious, isn’t it? unimaginable that any self-respecting agency would even think of writing copy like this for a client, let alone a government organization.
it’s posters like these that remind me how culturally progressive advertising forces our world to be. it’s a hopeful reminder that things can change, and equality (or something closer to equality) is possible.