Sunday, June 2, 2013


INANITY IN AMERICAN ADVERTISING 
AT ITS BEST? OR AT ITS WORST?

Do you remember these ads back in the in innocent days of yore –– or have you spent all these years trying to forget?











If you consider these ads "demeaning to women," you must be a Post-Modern Feminist.

Why was no one upset when they first came out back in the 1950's? Why did no one consider them pornographic? Even "churchladies" of the period found them quite acceptable, because they appeared in The Ladies Home Journal and all the other respectable magazines of the period.

34 comments:

  1. I recall when the ladies' underwear sections of the classier department stores were called "foundations."

    The ladies' magazines, of course, featured all sorts of risqué advertisements. I don't recall anyone being offended -- although the teenaged boys liked to thumb through mom's magazines. Heh.

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  2. Yes. "Foundation Garments" was the term I remember hearing.

    It's getting to the point where the "nostalgia" of just a few years ago seems downright "quaint" today.

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  3. Hilarious. Those bras make women's breasts look like weapons. So that's where Madonna got the idea of performing in bustiers that looked like instruments of torture from the Middle Ages.

    Very glad we ladies have left that artificial look behind us and are more natural in the "foundation garments" department.

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  4. Zowie kazam!

    That woman on the desk could put an eye out!

    I don't know why anyone would consider these ads demeaning to women. They are glamorous.

    The cultural sewer we all find ourselves drowning in today is all about demeaning women and reducing them to sex objects

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  5. Ms Shaw, your observation just just inspired a new term to describe the '50's:

    The ERA of the BALLISTIC BRASSIERE!

    };-)>


    I never thought of it before but the undergarments in question do look a lot like business end of a pair of shell casings, don't they?

    Always funny to remember how styles change. During the Restoration Period in England Ladies of Fashion not only exposed their breasts, they ROUGED them.

    In the Victorian Era women ritually encased themselves in the moral equivalent of The Iron Maiden covered by untold layers of garments both under and outer that used up enough yardage of various materials to drape a ballroom.

    In the Roaring Twenties wore loose, scanty, largely shapeless garments, skirts were short, breasts uncaged, and hair was chopped off. Loose garments gave rise to even looser morals, and we were off to the races once again.

    A study of History through Women's Fashion could be fascinating.

    All we learn from History, however, is that stability is a myth and "change is the only constant."

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  6. Yes they were undergarments, but those bras are no more revealing than the bathing suits of the time.

    Also, if you notice, their belly buttons are covered. Don't ask me why I know this, but in the 50's, bearing one's midriff on TV was *only* acceptable as long as the belly button was covered. The same went for males: they were allowed to be shirtless so long as their belly buttons were covered.

    Don't believe me? Watch an episode of I Dream of Jeannie (which was made in the 60s, I know, but close enough). Whenever Larry Hagman has his shirt off at like, the beach or something, his swim trunks are worn over his belly button.

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  7. Looks like somebody here has a fixation on Ladies breasts
    Sounds like the only person who is obsessed is you the author of this blog.
    Personally, I think that like you most men would prefer a woman to have very large breasts while women mostly prefer small to medium well-shaped breasts than larger ill-defined ones. Just speculation of course, I never took a survey on the subject.
    Ignoring all the psychology, smaller breasts just feel better.

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  8. It has gotten a lot easier to steal first base.

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  9. Breast = Primal object "cause" of all human desire. The first "symbolic" Pavlovian bell.

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  10. ...and the bigger it was, the more "satisfying" it was, as well. ;)

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  12. FT,
    Along the lines of your remark In the Victorian Era women ritually encased themselves, please see THIS PHOTOGRAPH. The photographer who posts at that site is not someone whom I personally know; he specializes in sites that have been deserted. Amazing what he finds!

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  14. AOW,
    I believe the photograph is of a cast worn be a person with scoliosis. Now days, the braces are removable, but back then they had to be cut off.

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  15. I don't believe that today's Post Modern age should pretend that just because sex and sexuality are more "in your face" than what is considered to be the laid back age of the "uptight and anal retentive", that Post Modernism has allegedly replaced with the more enlightened so-called acceptance of diversity in sexual choices. Even in the distant medieval past, times when Christendom was defined by the combined power of the church and state resting in the ultimate authority of the papacy, individuals were persecuted as heretics and women may have suffered worse if they were accused of being witches. The charges may indeed have made today's voyeuristic internet pornographer in a constant state of arousal even by reading the dreaded charges: a woman having sexual intercourse with the devil, the devil in the minds of the "devout of the day" having a bifurcated penis enabling the dastardly demon to penetrate her both vaginally and anally.

    Not sure why the Progressive mentality of today would yearn to return to the medieval feudal age of the past, because that would be the ultimate destination of the fruits of Post Modernism—an age of serfs and overlords.

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  16. A FEW UPDATED AD IDEAS.

    PICTURE THESE, IF YOU WILL:

    1. I dreamed I sat in the Oval Office as the first woman president in my Maidenform Bra.

    2. I dreamed I presided over a Cabinet Meeting in my Maidenform Bra.

    3. I dreamed I gave my acceptance speech to my appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in my Maidenform Bra.

    4. I dreamed I decided to turn the country over exclusively to the rule of women in my Maidenform Bra.

    5. I dreamed I presided over the closing of Gitmo in my Maidenform bra.

    6. I dreamed I gelded my husband in my Maidenform Bra.

    7. I dreamed I led the Mayday Parade in my Maidenform Bra.

    8. I dreamed I was the overseer of a chain gang in my Maidenform Bra.

    9. I dreamed my lesbian lover and I got married in our Maidenform Bras.

    10. I dreamed was a high paid dominatrix in my Maidenform Bra.

    11. I dreamed I was a Drill Sergeant barking orders in my Maidenform Bra.

    12. I dreamed I rode to hell in a handcart in my Maidenform Bra.


    Do you have any more amusing Maidenform Bra ad ideas? If so, feel free to share as long as they don't insult other bloggers or those who comment here.

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  17. Aspirational marketting....

    I Dreamt I Was a Knockout in My Maidenform Bra.

    Picture a hot blond preening in a boxing rink, wearing only a bra, silver shorts, high heels, and boxing gloves.

    What could be more Freudian? Sex! Strength! Independence! Dominance! (Did I mention sex?) Even today in the Lady Gaga bare-all era, this ad still generates heat. A bonfire when it appeared February 3, 1961, in Life Magazine. Not just hot, Ms. Maidenform was a poster girl of that age's fulfillment fantasies and budding female empowerment movement. The campaign, launched in 1949, ranked 28th in Advertising Age's 100 most memorable ad campaigns. That it ran for more than twenty years speaks to its brilliance.

    To Norman, Craig & Kunnel -- the ad agency who created the campaign in 1949 -- we must say, Bra-va!

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  18. Aspirational advertising formed the basis of many, many advert campaigns. Today, it is no longer the individual's aspirations that are touted... it's "societies".

    I only eat "free range" chicken and drink coffee from "fair trade" growers, wear no child labour sneakers, and "union made" in America shirts.

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  19. To seek "personal" advancement, if one is not some poor discriminated against minority... is considered far to gauche today. We must seek to raise up the "less fortunate."

    If I am powerful, what need have I to advance my own "personal" interests? $2.00 cups of coffee... are for a "good" cause.

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  20. Indirect Freudian advertising is much, MUCH more effective.

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  21. A rising tide lifts ALL boats. ;)

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  23. With so many asses in congress, I am not surprised that her butt has come under scrutiny.

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  24. Well, Jerry, it seems to me we have practically nothing but butts in Washington, D.C.

    I'm truly non-partisan.

    I dislike them all. ;-)

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  25. Is this a blog or a time capsule?

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  26. Surely you above all others recognize the TIMELESS significance of these Maidenform Bra commercials, my dear Canardo?

    Undoubtedly the Ballistic Brassiere, revealing Woman As Warrior in all her glory is the natural precursor of the modern Women's Movement.

    "Naturellment, c'est tres signifique, n'est-ce-pas?"

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  27. Well, FT, I don't think there's anything surprising about advertisers trying to convince women that Maidenform was the way to project sexuality.

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  28. It all started with Brünhilde no doubt -- or possibly a reversal of the Chastitty belt? ;-}

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  29. What you fail to understand, FT, is that in order to get "Obamacare" kick-started, there is a need for an urgent new reason to get young boys, not just young girls", vaccinated for HPV as a "preventative" healthcare measure.

    This vaccination is VERY costly... and so, the "herd" MUST be stampeded into DEMANDING the vaccination.

    Healthcare is, after all, a new Human "right", after all.

    And Michael Douglas will soon become the new "poster child" for perfectly avoidable yet irresponsibly self-inflicted social diseases.

    Big-Pharma... your generous donations to the Obama Campaign are going to pay off BIG TIME!

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