Dr AL Sharada
Feb 10, 2021

Creative Critique from a gender lens: 1-5 February

Dr AL Sharada, director, Population First, reviews a selection of ads from last week

Dr Sharada reviews eight ads from last week
Dr Sharada reviews eight ads from last week

Indeed, pregnancy is not really a hindrance to doing what we want to do, be it continuing to work, pursue interests or travel. It is definitely no reason for women to give up jobs and careers. 
Did I get the message correct – that it is not pregnancy, it is not Lux soap but the pride and pleasure of doing what one wants to do that brings a glow to the face of a woman? 
Gender Sensitivity (GS) Score: 3.25/5
The ad projects two young women entrepreneurs and people of different age groups. While one young woman is shown flying a kite, generally seen as a men's sport, the other young woman teasingly asks her father whether she should call him partner or papa. The two women are not just shown to pursue their dreams but also to redefine their gendered roles. However, they still fall within the trope of young middle-class women in advertising in terms of their physical appearance. The creative team could have pushed the envelope further by depicting a female shop owner or a delivery person. We need to see more girls and women in more diverse roles. 
GS Score: 4/5

A personalised service without slotting customers into stereotypes is a very liberating concept for women who are comfortable in their skin. The ad is thought-provoking since it mentions the myriad ways in which women are judged and typecast, and the consequences on their aspirations and choices. 
GS Score: 3.5/5

Once again we see a woman being responsible for keeping the toilet smelling fresh and a man doubting her claims! Are men not bothered by stinking toilets? 
GS Score: 2/5

It is good to see a male nurse being portrayed in the ad. But it also reflects an internalised biased perception that low paying jobs are done by men with darker skin tones.
GS Score: 2.5/5
It is such a change to see women of different body types and ages – women who do not really fit into the image of advertising models being featured in an ad. Not just that, the ad also gives women equal screen space to sell a product – insurance – which is not seen as a product for women. It is generally considered as the responsibility of men to buy insurance to protect their families from any unforeseen calamity.  
GS Score: 4/5

Do we want our children now to obsess with what goes into their soap? Children mouthing such high funda facts about soap is neither interesting nor engaging. Definitely not desirable. 
GS Score: 1.5/5

Comfort judged in terms of the ability of the woman to wear a bindi as the car goes on a speed breaker, while the car being driven by a man. It cannot get more stereotypical than this. 
GS Score: 2/5
Campaign India

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