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What’s the Lesson Here?

Posted by Chanelle Schneider on August 13, 2009

I have no problem with advertisement encouraging women to become healthy. The problem I have is with the copy on this advertisement. “Just bought bikini that challenges some obscenity laws.” What??!! Why is it that when a woman loses weight to become healthy, she becomes a sex object? Now that she is skinny she is permitted to wear a bikini that does what? Challenge obscenity laws? For what reason? To show off her body? Why? Because now she is proud of it? Now that she has lost this weight that, by societal standards, makes her fat and, therefore, ugly, she can be proud of her body. Way to go Ad Council. Thank you for perpetuating the idea that women cannot and should not be happy with themselves unless they are skinny, or, should I say, “healthy”.

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6 Responses to “What’s the Lesson Here?”

  1. Cyndi said

    I agree that the media perpetuates the ridiculous idea that we are all supposed to be perfect AND that perfect = ultra thin. I cannot believe this ad campaign. It really is over the top offensive!

    • It’s ridiculous. The fact that these ads are posted on bus shelters is even more indicative of their target audience. What they fail to understand is that the (majority of) people who have to take public transportation are not in the position to even follow those suggestions. Cook meals at home and bring them to work. Ok. I’ll bring my Ramen to work because Ramen is all I can afford. Cooking at home instead of buying takeout does not mean it is any more healthy. Having her in a bikini with the focus on her bottom and hips, suggesting that she is overweight and unhealthy does not do anything but make the majority of people seeing this ad either disgusted or hurt.

  2. Johanna said

    That’s the society, that’s the culture…and it’s destructive.

  3. Ms. Kris said

    Agreed! In conjunction with my previous post regarding the pressures of society its actually very appalling and disturbing. And they wonder why so many of our young ones find it so fashionably cool to be anorexic or bulimic. “Starving is the new black” It’s in and a lot of people are doing it.

  4. Kevin L said

    This poster reminds me of the old saying that the road to hell was paved with good intentions. I can “see” how they were trying to show how some simple changes in lifestyle could lead to weight loss. Instead, they added to the whole objectifying of women. As a man, I will be the first to admit to being a visual being. So, I am not trying to sound like some perfect angel of virtue.

    I have seen how society’s fascination with physical beauty has made some downright gorgeous women feel to be made like they are less than because they are not a size 0. What kills me is that a lot of these (too) skinny or thin women may actually be more unhealthy than more normal sized women. However, because this is not what Hollywood or advertisers show, they do not believe it. Personally, it is frustrating and upsetting to me when i compliment a woman and she responds back that she is too fat or thinks that I am telling her lies to get in her pants.

    The only way that I see us ever getting out of this rabbit hole is by “rewarding” those shows, products, magazines, etc that actively promote healthy lifestyles and healthy figures.

    • Goody said

      I totally agree with Kevin about the fact that i think their intention was to promote making positive changes that would result in a losing weight and therefore feeling bold enough to wear a scandalous bikini.

      but once again a good idea went south..

      of all the angles that they could have chosen they chose the one that perpetuates the idea that your weight is the only thing keeping you from feeling good on the beach.

      when it’s not. its your perception of yourself that does.

      why couldn’t they have approached this from the angle of woman starts working out, starts feeling better and has more energy, decides to go out and pursue her dreams.

      would that not have been just as motivating without once again having everything be about physicality and its attractiveness?

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