We are a nation of ironies. While some of us confuse feminism with misandry, most of us the only time we grow gender-sensitized and respect women is when a case of rape or molestation is reported. (Or on the Women’s Day.) And, surprisingly, these new-found and short-lived sense of equality prevails mainly on social media. While, advertisements are mainly sale strategies to attract consumers, it cannot be forgotten they have the innate responsibility of gelling with a specific culture so that buyers would be able to relate. Here are 5 new-age advertisement films that have strived to redefine gender roles:
1. Samsung Galaxy Note 4
Do single fathers make bad parents? Why should child custody cases exclusively favour mothers? The 46-second advertisement featuring a toddler and her dad, where the later caters to all of her daily necessities while working at the same time, raises many such crucial questions.
2. Airtel Smartphone network.
A working wife who is designated higher than her husband! The Indian mindset says, either she should be a snobbish and dominating wife or the husband must be unmanly. But shunning these stupid notions, the advertisement shows a healthy relationship between a happy urban couple, where the wife is faithful to both her roles as a boss and a wife. Time to bid farewell to your inflated egos Indian men?
3. Titan Enigma.
Indians specialize in stereotyped notions of beauty. But, Chitrangada Singh plays a proud spectacled model in the advertisement that refuses to let go of her glasses for a beauty product.
In the end the product signs her anyway as she is successful and she is successful because she loves herself, the way she is.
4. Havel’s food processor.
Havel’s has made women empowerment a forte in their promotion campaign. But this particular advertisement eschews the compulsive habit Indian men have of assessing the worth of their wives through the stature of their mother. Why should the husband compare his wife’s culinary skills to his mother? Why should wives replicate their mother-in-laws to earn their husband’s attention? Aren’t their personalities enough to woo him?
5. PC Jewellers.
Funny that even in the 21st century, the aptitude of the husband goes to gauge the lifestyle of the wife. Why? Aren’t the educated and working wives sufficient enough to earn their luxuries? In this commercial, an unemployed man, not only acknowledges the efforts of his working wife (something very rare for Indian men) in earning a living for the family, the wife, after being complimented as the “man of the house” proudly states that “I am the woman of the House”. Swag and dignity personified. But in the midst of the above, we also have advertisements such as those of Fair and Lovely which are nothing but out-of-touch in their depiction of women. Look at Aishwarya Rai Bacchan, she happily gets her husband to do all the household chores alone in the name of ‘Biwi se Pyaar’!
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