Creative critique from a gender lens: 16-20 August

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

Aug 27, 2021 02:46:00 AM | Article | Dr AL Sharada

The pandemic and the restrictions it imposed on leading a normal life are causing a lot of distress among people, forcing them to throw caution to the wind to reclaim their lives. This is particularly true about the youth. In that context, it is worth appreciating the effort of Fogg, a youth brand, to caution them that the pandemic is not over yet and beseech them to be a little patient for some more time.

However, men and boys are more visible in the ad than women, though the context is such that both men and women are likely to be equally involved.
Gender Sensitivity Score (GSS): 3/5

A humorous ad which has, for a change, a woman extolling the virtues of a ceiling fan, thus breaking the stereotype that men are best informed about such technical matters.
GSS: 3.25/5

Once again a timely ad in the context of persisting resistance to vaccination due to many misconceptions. The communication effectively conveys the message by referring to the resistance to the polio vaccination which impacted the lives of so many people.
Considering the gender gap in men and women’s vaccination status, the ad does well by showing a woman come forward to break the resistance and be a role model for others.
GSS: 3.5/5

Why only fussy moms? Why not fussy dads? Why not fussy parents? Is nurturing and protecting children, instilling values, etc. the responsibility of only mothers? Is it right to say that the fussier she is, the better she is as a mother?
GSS: 2/5

On the face of it, it looks like an innocuous ad. But when we look at it critically, it is clear that it equates pride and glory as masculine attributes with everyone trying to twirl their moustaches, feeling a sense of pride and glory travelling in the Amaze.
GSS: 2.5/5

Once again an ad that reinforces the stereotype that decisions regarding detergents and cleaning products are the exclusive domain of women.
GSS: 2.5/5

Women continue to lag in taking decisions regarding investments. The ad breaks the stereotype by showing women talking about the app. However, showing women also facing the challenges in investing wisely would have normalised women engaging in such activities.
GSS: 3.25/5

The ad talks about the practice of women hiding their savings in the kitchen jars to meet unexpected expenses. The ad asks women to invest in mutual funds, as part of their investor education programme. While the fact that HDFC is reaching out to the women with small savings to invest in mutual funds is commendable, a lot more needs to be done for the economic empowerment of women in a country where 23% of women do not have bank accounts, and even among those who have bank accounts, very few operate or control them fully.
GSS: 3.25/5