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Feminist Literary Criticism and the Deconstruction of Ads: A Postmodern View of Advertising and Consumer Responses

Barbara B. Stern
Journal of Consumer Research
Vol. 19, No. 4 (Mar., 1993), pp. 556-566
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2489440
Page Count: 11
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Feminist Literary Criticism and the Deconstruction of Ads: A Postmodern View of Advertising and Consumer Responses
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Abstract

This article examines text and consumer responses from the perspective of post-modern feminist literary criticism. It uses a feminist framework to incorporate the issues of advertising as gendered text and consumer responses as gendered readings into consumer research. The article begins with a brief background discussion of feminist literary theory to introduce the concept of gendered text and to set forth the "reading" methodology developed to identify it. Next, this method is demonstrated in a feminist reading of two advertising figures-the Marlboro Man and the Dakota Woman. Then, the article presents a feminist perspective on gendered reading-different male and female reading styles relevant to consumers and ads. Last, ideas about gendered texts and readers are integrated into ongoing consumer research on attitude toward the ad, inferencing, and empathy.

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