Race and Gender in the Media - Fayetteville State University

Transcription

Race and Gender in the Media - Fayetteville State University
Race and Gender in the Media: A Content Analysis of Advertisements in Two Mainstream
Black Magazines
Author(s): Vanessa Hazell and Juanne Clarke
Reviewed work(s):
Source: Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 39, No. 1 (Sep., 2008), pp. 5-21
Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40282545 .
Accessed: 24/01/2013 00:36
Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at .
http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp
.
JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of
content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms
of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected]
.
Sage Publications, Inc. is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Journal of Black
Studies.
http://www.jstor.org
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Race and Genderin
theMedia
Journalof Black Studies
Volume39 Number1
2008 5-21
September
© 2008 Sage Publications
10.1177/0021934706291402
http://jbs.sagepub.com
hostedat
http://online.sagepub.com
A ContentAnalysisofAdvertisements
in Two MainstreamBlack Magazines
VanessaHazell
Yorkville
University
JuanneClarke
LaurierUniversity
Wilfrid
of Black menand womenin the
The presentstudyexaminestheportrayal
in Black-oriented
featured
magazines.A
imagesand textsof advertisements
in EssenceandJet
on ads featured
content
analysisis conducted
comparative
dataanalysesreveal
andqualitative
magazinesfor2003 and2004.Quantitative
and negatively.
bothpositively
thatBlack peopleare portrayed
Ideologiesof
in
featured
continueto pervadeadvertisements
racismandWhitesupremacy
becausenewimagesandtextsconBlackmagazines,andthisis problematic
It is notenough
attitudes.
Blackpeoplewillbe basedon suchnegative
cerning
of Black people;negativeporto increasethenumberof positiveportrayals
be eliminated
mustalso decreaseandeventually
altogether.
trayals
Keywords: mediaanalysis;Blackportrayals;race; gender;Whiteideals;
Blackideals
mass mediaare a resourcethatis widelyavailable.Theyhavefarhow
ofsociety.Theyaffect
members
on manydifferent
effects
reaching
This
is
most
issues
various
(Clarke,1992).
peopleperceiveand understand
in manydifferent
forms(e.g., televilikelydue to themedia'savailability
inoursociety
too
are
sion,radio,magazines).Advertisements
widespread
and
in
fromtelevisioncommercialsto pages newspapers
magazinesto
societal
and
reinforce
Internet
pop-upwindows.Ads subtlyperpetuate
their
both
and
race
beliefsand expectations
through
concerning
gender
thisarticleshouldbe addressedtoJuanneClarke,
Authors'Note:Correspondence
concerning
AvenueWest,Waterloo,
75 University
Wilfrid
Laurier
of
University,
Department Sociology,
Canada N2L 3C5.
Ontario,
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
6
Journal
ofBlack Studies
imagesandtexts(McLaughlin& Goulet,1999).Andthetextsand images
oftheadverin themediadirectly
thevaluesandinterests
reflect
presented
tisers,whoareusuallyWhitemen(Colfax& Sternberg,
1972).As a result,
ina stereotypical
and
peoplewhoarenotWhiteormaletendtobe portrayed
theseimagesandtextsbecomea partofthe
unfavorable
light.Unfortunately,
cultureof a societyandbecomethebasis on whichnewimagesandwords
are created(Baker,2005). In thisway,the dominantideologyof White
thepowerofWhitemalesoverfemales
andlegitimates
maintains
supremacy
and otherraces in our society(Bristor,
Lee, & Hunt,1995). These texts
and imagesare ofteninternalized
by membersof societyand thushave a
on people'sviewsandattitudes
concerning
peopleof a parlargeinfluence
ticulargenderorrace,as wellas on people'sviewsandattitudes
concerning
themselvesas membersof a particulargenderand race (Baker,2005;
McLaughlin& Goulet,1999).
traditional
andreinforce
Adsperpetuate
genderrolesandgenderinequalhow ideal men and womenact and presentthemselves
ityby portraying
and
idealmenaredominant,
successful,
strong,
(Baker,2005).In oursociety,
and
submissive,
beautiful,
sexuallyappealing.Ideal womenare physically
sexualobjects(Baker,2005).Theseidealimagesareusedin sellingproducts
tomen,theimage
bothto menandwomen.Forexample,in sellingproducts
- ifmenpurchase
theproduct,
oftheidealwomanis usedas a statussymbol
thecharacto
women
more
to
become
can
possessing
appealing
they hope
towomen,the
oftheidealwoman(Baker,2005).In sellingproducts
teristics
theprodimageoftheidealwomanservesas a rolemodel bypurchasing
can becomecloserto theideal womanand thus
uct,thefemaleconsumer
becomemoredesirableto men(Baker,2005).
Magazines DirectedTowardWhiteAudiences
in magazine
In the1950s,Black peopleweregreatlyunderrepresented
of skincolor"existedat
& Schuman,1984).A "hierarchy
ads (Humphrey
in themedia;Black
and thiswas reflected
thispointin Americanhistory,
more
as
seen
were
tones
skin
with
sociallyandculturbeing
lighter
people
et al., 1995).
Black
dark-skinned
than
(Bristor
people
ally acceptable
whodid
Black
in
cited
as
to
Dates
Leslie,
1995),
people
(1990,
According
ofbeauty(i.e.,lightskin,long,straight
notfitintoWhitepeople'sstandards
images.
hair,thinlips,thinfigure)wereexcludedfromadvertisement
ofBlackpeopleinthemedia
theportrayal
thecivilrights
After
movement,
(1972) conslowlybeganto change(Leslie, 1995). Colfaxand Sternberg
in
Reader's
featured
ads
of
ducteda content
Look,
Life,and
Digest,
analysis
5% ofads
from1965to 1970.In 1965,approximately
Ladies'HomeJournal
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell, Clarke / Race and Gender in the Media
7
in theads were
includedBlack modelsand 3% of all thepeoplepresented
in magazineads more
Black.By 1970,Blackpeoplewerebeingpresented
and in a broaderrangeof ads. However,theywerestillbeing
frequently
in thegeneralpopulation.
totheirproportions
compared
underrepresented
a content
andSchuman(1984) conducted
analysisofads feaHumphrey
turedin Timeand Ladies' Home Journalfrom1950 to 1980 to examine
three
considered
ofBlackpeople.The researchers
changesin theportrayal
The firstmodelstatedthatBlack and
theirfindings.
modelsin interpreting
The secondmodel
in thesame manner.
Whitepeoplewouldbe presented
between
would reflectthe real-lifedifferences
statedthatthisportrayal
of Black
thesetworacialgroups.The thirdmodelstatedthattheportrayal
by Whitepeople's attitudestoward
people would be greatlyinfluenced
Blackpeople.The thirdmodelwas mostapplicableto theirfindings.
of ads featuring
and Schumanalso foundthattheproportion
Humphrey
theyears,from1% in 1950toupto 10% in
Blackpeopleincreased
throughout
inadsuptothe
Blackpeoplewerestillbeingunderrepresented
1982.However,
yetfewer
1980s.Thatis,Blackpeopleconsistof 12% oftheU.S. population,
Blackpeople.
featured
than12%oftheadsinTimeandLadies'HomeJournal
Bowenand Schmid(1997) also conducteda content
analysisof ads, in
the magazinesCosmopolitan,Esquire, Family Circle, Fortune,Good
andTimefrom1987and
SportsIllustrated,
Life,NewYorker,
Housekeeping,
the
foundthatalthough
researchers
The
to
1994, updatepreviousfindings.
- up to 10.6% in 1992Black peopleincreased
numberof ads featuring
Whitepeople
Moreover,
Black people werestillbeingunderrepresented.
of
tothereadership
inmagazineads as compared
werebeingoverrepresented
is
of
White
the
Cosmopolitan
the particular
readership
magazine(e.g.,
White
feature
in
this
ads
of
the
97.3%
people).
magazine
84.7%,yet
to theclassic study,Coifax and Sternberg
(1972) foundthat
Returning
in magazineads muchmore
Black womenand childrenwereportrayed
believedthatthiswas duetothefact
oftenthanBlackmen.The researchers
to a Whiteaudiencethan
thatthesegroupswereseen as less threatening
and Schuman(1984) foundthat
Black men were. However,Humphrey
in a relatively
Black menand womenwererepresented
equal numberof
foundthatthere
also
and
Schmid
Bowen
In
ads.
(1997)
contrast,
magazine
theproofBlackfemalesthanBlackmales,although
number
was a greater
while
increased
had
males
Black
of
stereotypical.
remaining
portion
foundthatin 54% of the magazineads, Black
Colfaxand Sternberg
whereasWhitepeople
in
were
portrayed lowerstatusoccupations,
people
The
status
lower
in
majorityof White
were rarelyportrayed
positions.
of Black people
the
whereas
as
were
majority
depicted consumers,
people
thatin 1965,
found
themselves.
the
as
weredepicted
Finally,they
products
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
8
Journal
of Black Studies
80% oftheBlackpeoplein theads wereportrayed
as musicians.However,
thispercentage
declinedto41% by 1970,as Blackpeoplebegantoincreasin highstatuspositions.
inglybe presented
on
Colfax
and
andSchumanfound
Building
Steinberg's
study,
Humphrey
thatin 1950,Blackpeoplewereneverportrayed
in dominant
rolesandwere
insubordinate
in62% oftheads.Furthermore,
portrayed
positions
theyfound
thatall oftheads featuring
Blackpeopleportrayed
theminlow-skilled
labor
cooks,servants).
positions(e.g.,laborers,
By 1982,only14% oftheads feaBlackpeopleportrayed
theminlow-skilled
laborpositions.
Incontrast,
turing
Whitepeoplewereportrayed
as high-status,
idleconsumers
inmagazineads
from1950 to 1982.In addition,
it was foundthatBlack peoplewereoverintheoccupation
ofprofessional
athlete.
represented
Bowenand Schmid(1997) confirmed
mostofthepreviousresearchers'
as athletes,
results,findingthatBlack people weremostoftenportrayed
musicians,and in familysettings.
Theyalso foundthatBlack peoplewere
of theproductbeingadvertised,
as Colfax
beingused as linksto attributes
andSternberg
ColfaxandSternberg
foundthat
(1972) found.Furthermore,
the numberof Whitepeople alwaysoutnumbered
the numberof Black
peoplein theads.
Anothernoteworthy
and Schuman(1984) is that
finding
by Humphrey
Whitepeopleand Black peopledid notengagein informal
interactions
in
any of the ads in the 1950s. By 1980 though,Black people and White
in relationships
ofequal status89% ofthetime,and
peoplewereportrayed
65% ofthetime,theyengagedin informal
interactions.
Magazines DirectedTowardBlack Audiences
Leslie (1995) conducteda contentanalysisof theportrayal
of Black
of ads
people in Ebonyfrom1957 to 1989. He foundthatthepercentage
naturalBlack hairstyles
increased,whileads featuring
featuring
straightened hairdecreasedand ads featuring
a varietyof Black hairstyles
also
increased.In addition,ads featuring
Black peopleadheringtoWhitestandardsof beautydecreased,as did ads featuring
Black people adheringto
Black standardsof beauty;ads featuring
both typesof Black models
increased.
Genderand Race and Media Portrayal
of genderandracehavebeen
Up to thispoint,thesocialcharacteristics
consideredseparately
in mediaportrayals,
butin reality,
genderand race
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
9
ofteninteractin how people are portrayed
in the media. For example,
White
women
often
are
as possessingthe
although
stereotypically
presented
oftheidealwomandiscussedpreviously,
characteristics
themanner
inwhich
Black womenare presentedin the media differs
fromthisideal. White
womentendtobe presented
as submissive,
whereasBlackwomentendtobe
of
portrayal
presentedas dominant(Baker,2005). Anotherstereotypical
Blackwomenis thatofthematriarch,
as authoritative
headsofthehousehold
as
or singlemothers
(Baker,2005). Black womenare also oftenportrayed
as identified
Sapphire,
byCollins(2000,as citedinBaker,2005). Sapphireis
and overlyexpressive(Baker,2005). Finally,
headstrong,
independent,
to Jewell(1993,as citedin Baker,2005),Blackwomenareoften
according
with
and sexuallyaggressive,
as Jezebels-captivating,
seductive,
portrayed
ofbeauty.
thatadheretoWhitestandards
Europeanfeatures
of womenin
McLaughlinand Goulet(1999) comparedthe portrayal
White-oriented
magazines(i.e., Cosmopolitan,Us, People) and Blackoriented
magazines(i.e.,Ebony,Essence)forOctober1996.Theresearchers
in submissive
foundthatwomenwerepresented
poses muchmoreoftenin
White-oriented
magazineswerepormagazines.Womenin Black-oriented
strongand holdingoccupationalstatus.Images of
trayedas financially
andfamin Black-oriented
families
wereprevalent
magazines,
single-parent
theresearchers
magazines.Finally,
ilyimageswerescarceinWhite-oriented
full-facial
50% of the ads featuredconfident,
foundthatapproximately
imagesofwomen.
of womenin magazinesgeared
Baker(2005) comparedthe portrayal
towardWhitewomen(i.e.,Cosmopolitan,
Vogue),magazinesgearedtoward
Black women(i.e., Essence,Honey),magazinesgearedtowardWhitemen
(i.e.,GQ,Maxim),andmagazinesgearedtowardBlackmen(i.e.,BlackMen,
of femalemodelsfeaKing)fortheyear2002. She foundthatthemajority
and
that
mostfemalemodels
were
White
turedinWhite-oriented
magazines
In
Bakernoted
were
Black.
in Black-oriented
featured
addition,
magazines
in magazinesgeared
as dominant
thatwomenweremoreoftenportrayed
towardBlack womenthanin magazinesgearedtowardWhitewomen.
she foundthatWhitewomenweremuchmorelikelyto be
Furthermore,
(i.e.,
objectified withtheirfaceshiddenandemphasisbeingplacedon their
thanBlack womenin magazinesgearedtowardWhite
physicalattributes)
men,Whitewomen,and especiallyBlack men.WhenBlack womenwere
withmenin Black-oriented
magazines,thesewomenwereporpresented
In terms
than
with
whomtheyarefeatured.
the
men
in
trayed higher
positions
BakerfoundthatoveralltheBlack womenfeaof physicalcharacteristics,
turedin theads had mediumcomplexions,
hair,and curvyfigures.
straight
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
10
Journal
ofBlack Studies
Morespecifically,
whenfeatured
inWhite-oriented
Blackfemale
magazines,
modelswithlighter
skintones,straighter
tendedto
hair,andthinner
figures
be presented.
Littlehas beensaidup tothispointabouthowWhiteandBlackmenare
in themedia.This is because few studieshave examinedthis
portrayed
What
is knownis thattheportrayal
of mentendsto be stereotypical
topic.
and the stereotypes
Whitemen and Black mendiffer.
White
concerning
menareoftenstereotypically
as possessingthecharacteristics
of
presented
theideal mandiscussedpreviously.
Black menare stereotypically
defined
as intimidating,
or evenhostile,and Humphrey
and Schuman
aggressive,
thatBlack men
(1984) and Bowen and Schmid(1997) have documented
havebeenoverrepresented
as musicians,
andoversexed(Colfax&
athletes,
1972).
Sternberg,
StatementofPurpose
The present
researchseeksto complement
andextendpreviousresearch
on theportrayal
of Black peoplein magazineads. A comparative
content
was
conducted
on
ads
featured
in
two
analysis
magazinesgearedtoward
Black audiencesfor2003 and 2004. This studyexaminesnot onlythe
in ads, as previousstudieshavedone,butalso thetextsof
imagesfeatured
theseads. It is expectedthatthesetextswill reflectan ideologyof White
withassociatedracializedgenderstereotypes.
Based on previsupremacy
ous research,
thefollowing
werehypothesized:
1. White
women
willbe morelikely
tobe portrayed
as submissive,
depenandobjectified
thanBlackwomen.
dent,
2. Blackwomen
willbe morelikely
tobe portrayed
as dominant
andindethanWhite
women.
pendent
3. Blackwomen
willbeportrayed
moreoften
withphysical
characteristics
thatadhereto Whitestandards
of beauty(i.e.,lightcomplexion,
thin
nose,thinlips,thinfigure,
of
hair)thanBlackstandards
longstraight
broadnose,thicklips,larger
(i.e.,darkcomplexion,
beauty
bodysize,
hair).
naturally
curly
4. Fewadswillportray
BlackpeopleandWhite
ininforpeopleinteracting
mal,social,orintimate
settings.
"health"and bodyissueswereexaminedto limitthe
Onlyads concerning
focus.
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
11
SamplingProcedures
- one magaTwomass-circulating
magazineswereselectedforanalysis
zine was gearedtowardBlack women(i.e., Essence) and theothermagazine was gearedtowardBlack menand women(i.e., Jet).Jetis published
of morethan9 million,whereasEssence is
weeklyand has a readership
has
a
of morethan7 million(Essence
and
readership
publishedmonthly
Johnson
Communications,
Inc., 2006;
PublishingCompany,Inc., 2006).
No magazinesthatweredirectedsolelyto maleswereselectedbecauseof
healthinformation.
a lackofthistypeof magazinefeaturing
2004
IssuesfromMarch2003,July2003,September
2004,andNovember
different
seasons.Everyotherad
wereselected,witheachissuerepresenting
an averageof21 ads thatwere
intheissuesofEssencewas coded,producing
coded per issue.Everyotherad was also coded forJetforthemonthof
4 ads.The
March,exceptfortheMarch10,2003,issue,whichonlycontained
and
unavailable.
The
was
issue
March17,2003,
July21,2003,
July14,2003,
therefore
all of theads in theavailable
issuesofJetwerealso unavailable,
Julyissues were coded. The first4 ads fromthe September6, 2004,
20, 2004,issuesofJetwerecoded,and
13,2004,andSeptember
September
thefirst
5 ads fromtheSeptember
27, 2004,issuewerecoded.Becausethe
November8, 2004, issue of Jetwas unavailable,all of theads fromthe
with
November
issueswerecoded.Thisprovidedtheresearchers
remaining
a totalof 18 issuesofBlackmagazinesto content
analyze.
Method
A deductivemethodof contentanalysiswas used in examiningthe
imagesandtextsoftheads. The ads wereexaminedandtheirthemeswere
noted.Independent
codingcategoriesweredevisedbased on thesethemes
of Black people
on theportrayal
the
and
findings
by previousresearchers
theracism
to
document
also
devised
was
A
in printmedia. codingcategory
and
resulted
ads.
The
texts
of
the
evidentinthe
codingcategories
following
the
audience
of
sheet:
wereused in creatinga coding
productsadvertised,
of
the
model
characteristics
or
ads, pictureof a product person,physical
model
race,skintone,hair,nose,lips,bodytype),occupation,
(i.e.,gender,
White
number
of
of
Black
featured
alone or withothers,number
models,
or
dominant
or
formal
betweenmodels(i.e.,
informal),
models,interaction
and
or
consumer
submissive,model presentedas a
messages
product,
and thecodingsheets
impliedfromtext.The ads werethenreexamined
werecompletedwiththeinformation
providedbyeach ad.
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
12
Journal
ofBlack Studies
Data Analysis
The datawereanalyzedquantitatively
andqualitatively
toprovidean inand
of
the
and
texts
that
arefoundin ads
depthanalysis description
images
featured
inthemagazines.Each codingcategory
is discussedandillustrated
in turnin thefollowing
dataanalysis.
Productsadvertised.
ads in totalwerecodedfromthe2003
Thirty-seven
issuesofEssence,andtheseadsconsisted
ofhaircareads,skincare
primarily
ads (i.e.,ads fromvariousorganizations).
ads,drugads,andorganizational
In
ofads codedfromEssenceincreased
to45 ads,whichwere
2004,thenumber
of foodads andgeneral
mostlyaccountedforby an increasein thenumber
healthcareads. The number
ofads fromtheothercategories
remained
relafrom2003 to 2004. Thus,it appearsthatthehealthissues
tivelyconsistent
thatareofmostimportance
to Blackwomenarehaircareandskincare.
The30 ads codedfromthe2003issuesofJetconsisted
ofhaircare
mostly
ads.Thirty-four
ads,skincareads,feminine
hygieneads,andorganizational
ads werecodedin 2004,withthenumber
ofall categories
ofads increasing,
for
hair
feminine
and
care,
except
hygiene, generalhealthcare. Thus,it
Blackwomenaremoregreatly
appearsthathealthissuesconcerning
emphasizedthanthoseconcerning
BlackmeninJetmagazine.Thesehealthissues
were predominantly
hair care and skin care, mirroring
those foundin
Essence.The mostpopularcategory
of ads gearedtowardBlackmenin Jet
wasalso haircare.Thus,itcanbe concludedthatminorhealthissuesreceived
moreattention
intheads in Blackmagazinesthanmajorhealthissues.
Audienceof theads. Most of the ads featuredin the 2003 issues of
Essenceweregearedtowardwomen,whichwas notsurprising
as thismagazineis gearedtowarda Blackfemaleaudience.It was surprising
thoughto
findthatin 2004 mostof theads weregearedtowardwomenof all races.
In thisway,theneedsand interests
of Black womenare slowlybecoming
in a magazinethatis supposedtobe gearedtowardthem.In addineglected
tion,thenumberof ads gearedtowardmenand womenof all races,boys
and girlsof all races,and Black menand womenincreasedfrom2003 to
2004. Thisappearsto indicatethatthetypesofaudiencesbeingtargeted
by
advertisers
in Blackfemalemagazinesareexpanding.
Thesefindings
replicateColfaxandSteinberg's
thatBlack womenandchildren
(1972) finding
wereportrayed
inmagazineads moreoftenthanBlackmenandBowenand
Schmid's(1997) finding
thatBlack womenareportrayed
in magazineads
moreoftenthanBlack men.
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
13
In general,theads inJetweregearedtowarda largerrangeofaudiences
thantheads in Essencemagazine.In both2003 and 2004, mostads were
gearedtowardwomenofall races,followedbymenandwomenofall races
and Black women.This findingreplicatesHumphreyand Schuman's
thatthenumberofBlack menandwomenfeatured
in mag(1984) finding
azineads is relatively
audiequal. This is mostlikelydue to Jefstargeted
ence.However,despitetheirtargetaudience,in 2004, no ads weregeared
oftargetsolelyto Black men.Thisappearsto indicatethattheimportance
havedeemedit satisfactory
to
ingthisgrouphas decreasedas advertisers
ads aimedat menof all races.By doingso, the
targetBlack menthrough
ofBlack menarebeingneglected.
specificneedsandinterests
Adsfeaturing
productorperson.In both2003 and2004,mostoftheads
inEssencefeatured
botha modelandtheproduct
Ads feabeingadvertised.
theproduct
turing
onlyora modelonlywerethesecondmostcommonads,
andveryfewads featured
neither
a modelnora product(e.g.,ads withtext
ofresultswas also foundinJetmagazine.Becausemost
only).Thispattern
of the modelsin Black-oriented
magazinesare Black (to be discussed),
thesefindings
ColfaxandSteinberg's
(1972) andBowen
appearto support
and Schmid's(1997) findings
thatBlack modelsare oftenassociatedwith
theattributes
oftheproducttheyareadvertising.
As a result,Blackmodels
arestillbeingobjectified
in Black-oriented
magazinesin thepresent.
modelswerefeatured
in the2003 issues of Essence,conFifty-seven
ofmodelsfeasistingof5 1 femalemodelsand6 malemodels.The number
turedin the2004 issuesofEssenceroseto 62, withthenumberof female
modelsdecreasingto 46 andthenumberof malemodelsincreasing
to 16.
Therewerefewermodelsfeaturedin Jetmagazine:in the 2003 issues,
16 of whichwerefemaleand 10 of which
only26 modelswerefeatured,
weremale;in the2004 issues,43 modelswerefeatured,
33 ofwhichwere
femaleand 10 ofwhichweremale.Thus,itappearsthatsignificantly
fewer
male thanfemalemodelsare featuredin Essence magazine,presumably
becausethemagazineis gearedtowardwomen.The proportion
of women
to menin Jetwas significantly
largerthanin Essence,mostlikelybecause
Jetis gearedtowardbothmenandwomen.
Racial characteristics
ofthemodels.In bothEssenceandJetmagazines,
mostof themodelswereBlack,withotherracesbeingrepresented
signifiThis findingreplicatesBaker's(2005) findingthat
cantlyless frequently.
mostmodelsinBlackmagazinesareBlack.In the2004issuesofEssence,the
number
ofWhitemodelsincreased.
Thisappearsto indicatethatadvertisers
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
14
Journal
ofBlack Studies
aredeemingitacceptableto advertise
withWhitemodelsto Black
products
Black
women
because
are
women,possibly
willingto buyproducts
geared
toward
WhitewomentoliveuptoWhiteideals.Moreraciallydiversemodels
werefeatured
in Essencemagazinethanin Jetmagazine,as thelatteronly
featured
Black,White,and mixedAsian-Blackmodels,whereastheformer
also featured
IndianandAsianmodels.
In the2003 issuesof Essence magazine,mostof themodelshad light
and equal numberof models had
complexions,whereasa significant
mediumor darkcomplexions.In 2004, though,mostof themodelshad
darkcomplexions,
withthenumber
ofmodelswithmediumandlightcomplexionsfollowingcloselybehind.Most modelsin Jetmagazinein 2003
had mediumskintones,followedby darkand lightskintones,and most
modelsin 2004 haddarkskintones,closelyfollowedbymediumandlight
skintones.Thus,it appearsthatthenumberof modelsadheringto White
standardsof beautyin Black magazinesis decreasingas thenumberof
modelsadhering
to Black standards
ofbeautyis slowlyincreasing.
Hair characteristics.
Therewerea widevariety
ofhairstyles
in
featured
EssenceandJetmagazines.In the2003 issuesof Essence,thehairof the
femalemodels were equally likelyto be long (i.e., shoulderlengthor
longer)as to be shortor chinlengthand tendedto be blackand curlyor
wavy.In 2004,mostofthefemalemodelshadhairthatwas long,black,and
Thesefindings
straight.
appearto indicatethatBlack modelsare adhering
toWhitestandards
ofbeautyintermsoftheirhair(i.e.,long,straight,
curly,
orwavyhairrather
thannaturally
coarsehair).Blackstandards
ofbeautyin
termsof hair(i.e., shorter
but
hair,curly/coarse
hair)wereless prevalent,
mostBlack modelsdid haveblackhairrather
thanlighter
haircolors,and
the discrepancy
betweenthe numberof modelswithlong hair and the
numberofmodelswithshorthairwas relatively
small.
The femalemodelsinthe2003 issuesofJettendedtohavehairthatwas
In 2004, femaleJetmodelstendedto havehair
long,black,and straight.
thatwas longandblackandwerealmostequallylikelytohavestraight
hair
as to have curlyhair.These resultsare similarto thosefoundin Essence
thatBlack modelsare adheringto White
magazine,also demonstrating
standards
of beautyin termsof theirhair.The 2004 trendsindicate,howofbeautyarebecomingmorewidelyacceptedas
ever,thatBlackstandards
in magazineads.
curlyhairedmodelsbecomemoreprevalent
Mostof themalemodelsfeatured
in bothJetandEssencemagazinesin
2003 and 2004 had shortblackhair.In the2003 issuesof Essence,mostof
thesemodelsalsohadfacialhair,butthistrend
decreased
in2004.Perhapsthis
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
15
is becauseBlackmenareperceived
to be less threatening
without
facialhair
andwouldthusbe moreconducive
to sellingproducts.
Becauseoftheshortnessofthemalemodels'hair,itwas toodifficult
todetermine
hairtexture.
Facial characteristics.
MostofthefemalemodelsinbothEssenceandJet
in 2003 and 2004 had averaged-sized
nosesand lips.Although
thesecond
mostpopularfacialfeatures
in 2003 issuesofEssencewerelargenosesand
in Essenceweresmall
lips,in 2004 thesecondmostpopularfacialfeatures
in
nosesand smalland largelips.The secondmostpopularfacialfeatures
both2003 and2004 issuesofJetwerealso smallnosesandlargelips.This
arefeaturing
moremodelswithsmaller
appearsto indicatethatadvertisers
of beauty.Black
nosesand lips whothusbetteradhereto Whitestandards
as moremodelswithlarge
standards
ofbeautywerealso prevalent,
however,
thatboth
Leslie's(1995) findings
intheads.Thissupports
lipswerefeatured
ofbeautyandthose
toWhitestandards
thenumber
ofBlackmodelsadhering
ofbeautyhavebeenincreasing.
toBlackstandards
adhering
Male modelsin the2003 issues of Essence magazinetendedto have
average-or large-sizednoses and lips. In 2004, mostof themale models
nose size
nosesand lips,butthesecondmostprevalent
had average-sized
and lip size weresmall.Thus,thesametrendforfemalemodelsis occurringformale models,as smallerfacialfeaturesbecome moreprevalent
of Whiteideals of beauty.Most of themale
becauseof theperpetuation
modelsin Jetmagazinealso had average-sizednoses and lips in 2003,
whereasin 2004 mostof themaleshad average-or large-sizednoses and
average-sizedlips. Thus,Jetmagazineappearsto be moreacceptingof
Black ideals of beautythanEssence, as theirads featuredmore male
modelswithlargerfacialfeatures.
Bodytypes.The bodiesof femalemodelsin Essence tendednotto be
shown(e.g.,onlya headorbustshot).Thisfinding
McLaughlinand
supports
in Black magazines
thatmostof theads presented
Goulet's(1999) finding
and
themas self-confident
emphasizethefacesoffemalemodelsto portray
in
Essence
In 2003,thesecondmostprevalent
dominant.
magabodytype
zinewas an averagebodytype,butin 2004 thethinbodytypewas second
modelswithlargerbodysizes,
no ads featured
mostpopular.Furthermore,
are
more
Black
fact
that
the
acceptingof thisbodytype.
people
despite
indicatethatWhiteidealsofthinbodytypesarebeing
Thus,thesefindings
imposedon theBlackpopulation.
Similarfindingswere foundin Jetmagazine.In 2003, mostfemale
theirbodiesbeingshownor withan
eitherwithout
modelswerepresented
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
16
Journal
ofBlack Studies
averagebodytype.In 2004 though,mostfemalemodelshad a thinbody
type,closelyfollowedby an averagebodytype.This appearsto indicate
thatWhiteideals of beautyare evenmoreprevalent
in magazinesgeared
towardbothBlack menand women.Furthermore,
thenumberof models
featured
withouttheirbodiesdecreasedin 2004 relativeto thenumberof
modelswithotherbodytypes.Perhapsthisis becausefacialandbustshots
are intimidating
to men as a resultof the dominanceportrayed
by the
womenin theads.
In termsofmalemodels,inboth2003 and2004 andinbothEssenceand
Jetmagazines,malemodelstendedto haveaverage-sized
bodies.The secondmostprevalent
ads wereads thatdidnotfeature
thebodiesofthemale
modelsat all. It appearsthatfacialor bustshotsof menwerenotthemost
prevalent
typeofads,mostlikelybecauseofhowBlackmenareviewedas
intimidating
by theWhitepopulation.This could also explainthelack of
ads featuring
malemodelswithlargerbodysizes.
Occupation.Most of themodelsin bothEssence and Jetin 2003 and
2004 werenotportrayed
in anyoccupational
andthosethatwere
positions,
tendedtobe depictedin stereotypical
jobs. Modelstendedtobe represented
in familialroles(e.g.,mothers,
wives,husbands)andas athletes(e.g.,basketballplayers,boxers).In Jet,modelsalso tendedto be portrayed
as
membersof thecommunity
(i.e., friends,
neighbors)and as entertainers
(e.g., singers,actresses),and in 2004 issues of Essence, a significant
numberof malemodelsweredepictedas bodyguards.
Thesefindings
supIt is interesting,
thatin
portBowenand Schmid's(1997) findings.
though,
the2004 issues of bothEssence and Jet,modelsbeganto be featured
in
andtherapists.
artists,
Thus,
nonstereotypical
job positionssuchas students,
it appearsthattheoccupationalrolesportrayed
by modelsin Black magazinesareshifting
towardless stereotypical
job portrayals.
Modelfeaturedalone or withothers,numberofBlackmodels,number
betweenmodels.In bothEssenceandJet
ofWhitemodels,and interactions
magazinesforboth2003 and 2004 issues,themodelsweresignificantly
moreoftenfeatured
alone thanwithothermodels,althoughthisdiscrepto
ancywas smallerin the2004 issuesof Jet.Thus,it was notsurprising
findthatthemajority
ofads in EssenceandJetdidnotinvolveinteractions
betweenmodels,althoughthe numberof interactions
betweenmodels
increasedslightly
from2003 to 2004 in bothEssence and Jet.Whenthe
modelswere featuredwithothers,it was mostlikelywithotherBlack
weremoreofteninformal
thanformal.
models,andtheseinteractions
This
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race and Genderin theMedia
17
findingreplicatesBowen and Schmid's(1997) findingthatBlack and
Whitemodelsrarelyengagedin socialcontactin magazineads. It is interwithothers,
itwas
estingthatwhenWhitemodelswerefeatured
interacting
withnon-Blackmodels,despitethefactthatEssence and Jetare geared
towardBlack audiences.Thus,itappearsthatracialsegregation
is stillevidentin magazineads in thepresent.
Dominantor submissive.
Mostof themodelsin theads featured
in the
2003 and 2004 issuesof EssenceandJetwereportrayed
bothas dominant
relative
(i.e.,higher
authority,
size/height,
physicalposition)andsubmissive
andthecharac(i.e.,lowerrelative
authority,
size/height,
physicalcondition,
terization
of "softor delicate").This finding
providessome evidencefor
Baker's(2005) finding
thatBlackwomentendto be presented
as dominant
inmagazineads andforMcLaughlin
andGoulet's(1999) finding
thatwomen
arepresented
lessfrequently
inBlackmagazinesthaninWhite
submissively
Blackfemalemodelswerepresented
dommagazines.
Perhapstheprimarily
becauseof leftover
of Blackwomenas dominant
andto
inantly
stereotypes
and
appealto theBlack femaleaudience,who strivesto be self-confident,
toappealtotheWhitefemale
perhapstheywerealso presented
submissively
towardsubmissiveness
as an idealoffemininity.
audience,whostrive
Modelpresentedas a consumeror a product.Most of theads in both
EssenceandJetfeatured
themodelsas bothconsumers
andproducts,
with
theads portraying
themodelas a consumerand focusingon a particular
characteristic
ofthemodelto demonstrate
theeffectiveness
oftheproduct.
Althoughin the2003 issuesof Essence,non-Blackmodelswerefeatured
bothas consumersand as products,in 2004 the majorityof non-Black
modelswereportrayed
Non-Blackmodelsfeatured
in
solelyas consumers.
both2003 and2004 issuesofJetmagazinewerealso overwhelmingly
porThesefindings
trayedas consumers.
partially
replicatethoseofColfaxand
(1972) and Bowen and Schmid(1997), who foundthatWhite
Sternberg
as consumerswhereasBlack people were
peopletendedto be portrayed
as linksto productcharacteristics.
Thus,althoughBlack people
presented
are beingpresented
as consumers,
it appearsthatthehistorictendency
to
themas objectspersistsintothepresent.
portray
in
Messagesimplied
fromtext.An averageof 12 ads peryearfeatured
Essence and Jetmagazineshad underlying
racistmessages.These racist
messagesare theresultof theadvertisers
pushinga Whiteideal of beauty
and demonstrate
an insensitivity
forBlack people's meansof achieving
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
18
Journalof Black Studies
Whiteideals of beauty.These ads mostlyconcernedfadingdarkspotsor
than
skinas morebeautiful
an idealof lighter
blemishesandthusreflected
darkskin; alleviatingredness,whichwould not be a concernto Black
people since theirskinis typicallytoo dark;and makinghairwavyor
than
hairas morebeautiful
and thuscloserto theideal of straight
straight
that
and
more
coarsehair,and/or
shinier,
softer,
implying natmanageable,
to manage.
uralBlack hairis difficult
Discussion
resourcethatnotonlyprovidereaders
The mediaarea widelycirculated
societal
butalso perpetuate
withinformation
beliefs,whicharedominated
by
Ads inparticuraceandgender.
an ideologyofWhitesupremacy
concerning
societal
havegreatpowerin distributing
harmless,
lar,althoughseemingly
andthusin thisway
raceandgenderto thepopulation
messagesconcerning
of peopleof particular
and understandings
genshapepeople'sperceptions
articlesoughtto examinehowBlackpeopleare
dersandraces.The present
Blackmenandwomen.
inmagazinesgearedtoward
inads featured
portrayed
was bothpositiveandnegative.
It was foundthattheirportrayal
are sendingto Black readersis
The overallmessagethatadvertisers
arebecomingmoreaccepting
itis positivethatadvertisers
mixed.Although
of Black idealsof beautyby featuring
mostlyBlack modelsin ads geared
ofdarkerskinned
an increasing
number
towardBlackindividuals,
featuring
and dominant
Black modelsas self-confident
models,portraying
through
themin nonstereotypical
and
headshots,increasingly
occupations,
featuring
thereare also a numberof waysin which
themas consumers,
portraying
inmagazineads.Mostoftheads
Blackpeoplearebeingnegatively
portrayed
tominorhealthconcerns,
thusitappearsthatBlackreadersarenot
pertained
withthehealthinformation
beingprovided
theyneedon majorhealthissues,
at leastnotin ads. Coupledwiththefactthatmagazineads in Blackmagazinesare increasingly
to Whiteaudiences,Blackreadersare
beingoriented
notbeingprovidedwithhealthinformation
thatis of particular
concernfor
Blackindividuals.
Thisis quiteproblematic
becauseBlackpeoplecoulddeal
withmajorhealthconcernsearlieron in its courseand thushavea better
iftheyare madeawareof thesehealthconcernsearly,insteadof
prognosis
whentheillnesshas alreadyprogressed
intothe
seekingmedicalattention
laterstages,resulting
in unnecessarily
andmortality.
highratesofdisability
In sum,itappearsthatideologiesofracismandWhitesupremacy
continue
to pervadeads featured
in Blackmagazines.Magazineads areincreasingly
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
19
ofWhitemodelsis increasbeinggearedtowardotherraces,andthenumber
the
fact
that
these
are
ing,despite
magazines supposedto be gearedtoward
Blackaudiences.Thisinsensitivity
leadsto theneglectofthespecificneeds
ofbeautypreWhitestandards
andinterests
of Blackreaders.Furthermore,
vailin theseads,withfemalemodelsfeaturing
hair,mediumlong,straight
sizednoseandlips(withsmallnosesandlips secondmostpopular),a thin
Thisdevalues
bodytype(whentheirbodiesare shown),and as submissive.
Black culture'svaluesof
of beautyand thusundermines
Black standards
an
of theseads demonstrate
a significant
proportion
beauty.Furthermore,
In
this
ideals.
these
can
attain
how
Black
toward
way,
people
insensitivity
thesemagazineads can havea devastating
impacton Blackreaderswhoare
topursuea Whiteidealofbeautybutarenotgiventhemeansto
beingtaught
attainit.Thiscan havea significant
impacton thebodyesteemand
negative
theseads.
whoencounter
ofyoungBlackgirlsinparticular
self-esteem
with
featured
are
still
models
Black
Furthermore,
jobs and
stereotypical
fromWhitemodelsinmagazineads.Theyweremostly
areoftensegregated
withothers,these
alone in theads, butwhentheywerefeatured
featured
As well,they
wereinformal.
wereBlack andtheirinteractions
individuals
the
with
associated
often
were
productstheyadverby being
objectified
as consumers.
often
featured
more
were
White
models
Thus,
tised,whereas
with
Black
toward
attitudes
historic
itappearsthat
peoplepersist,
negative
is
This
in
the
and
reinforced
to
be
racismcontinuing
present.
perpetuated
toward
attitudes
this
in
because
way negative
problematic
particularly
culture.
Black peoplehavebecome,and continueto be a partof,Western
have
who
individuals
for
non-Black
harmful
not
are
These attitudes
only
who
for
Black
but
also
Black
of
individuals,
thewrongimpression
people
think
and
and
thesenegativeattitudes perceive
negatively
mayinternalize
aboutthemselves.
an ideologyof
In termsof gender,magazineads continueto perpetuate
beautiful
as physically
(accordingto
sexism,inwhichwomenarepresented
and
menare preand as sexualobjects
submissive,
Europeanstandards),
sentedas dominant,
strong,successful,and sexuallyappealing.Although
theseareidealsforWhiteindividuals,
theywereevidentin theads featured
in Essence and Jet,despitethe factthatmostof the modelsare Black.
as theywerealso
forBlackwomenwerealso evidenthowever,
Stereotypes
ideals
as dominant,
Jezebels,andinfamilialroles.Thus,although
presented
idealsforWhitefemalesarealso beingimposed
forBlackfemalespersist,
on Black females,perhapsas a meansof makingads moreappealingto a
Whiteaudience.Black mendid nothave muchof a presencein Blackorientedmagazines,and whentheywerefeatured,
theyadheredto White
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
20
ofBlack Studies
Journal
ideals. Theyweremostoftenfeatured
withaveragebodysizes, medium
and
sized-noseand lips,shortblackhair,no facialhair,as bothdominant
and
as
consumers
and
because
Black
both
submissive,
products.Perhaps
in Westernsociety,advertisers
feel
males are perceivedas intimidating
of
to
Black
male
models
adhere
to
White
ideals
masculinhave
compelled
ityto appealto a Whiteaudience.
thepresent
to lighttheseimportant
Although
studyhas brought
findings,
itis notwithout
itslimitations.
First,no magazinesweresampledthatwere
itwas notpossibleto
gearedsolelytowarda Blackmaleaudience;therefore,
in ads
obtaininformation
on how Black and Whitemodelsare presented
gearedsolelytowardthisaudience.Such a samplecouldhaveprovideda
ofhowWhiteandBlackmalemodelsare
morecomprehensive
understanding
in themedia.Futureresearch
In addicouldexaminethisfurther.
portrayed
tion,becauseconvenience
samplingwas used,somemagazineissuesfrom
timeperiodwerenotavailable.Therefore,
thepresent
theproposedsampling
ofads toprovide
fromsampling
a largernumber
studywouldhavebenefited
Futureresearchcouldexamine
moresolidsupport
forthecurrent
findings.
in otherformsofmedia.
howBlackmenandwomenareportrayed
Thus, althougha numberof significant
positivechangeshave taken
ofBlackpeoplein themediasincethe1950s,itdoes
place in theportrayal
notmeanthatit is no longera sourceof concern.Black people are still
and Whiteideals
in a stereotypical,
unfavorable
manner,
beingpresented
arestillbeingimposedon them.It is notenoughto increasethenumber
of
oftheseindividuals
ofBlackpeople;negative
portrayals
positiveportrayals
be eliminated
mustalso decreaseandeventually
Audiencesmust
altogether.
demandthatBlack ads arenotinfluenced
by an ideologyofracismandto
ensurethatBlack culture'svaluesarerepresented
andrespected.
By doing
Black peoplecan improve
so, societalbeliefsandexpectations
concerning
andBlack peoplecan feelmorepositively
aboutthemselves.
References
A contentanalysisof
Baker,C. N. (2005). Imagesof women'ssexualityin advertisements:
Black-andWhite-oriented
women'sandmen'smagazines.Sex Roles,52, 13-27.
in mainstream
Bowen,L., & Schmid,J. (1997). Minority
presenceand portrayal
magazine
An update.Journalism
and Mass Communication
74, 134-146.
advertising:
Quarterly,
Americanimagesin teleBristor,
J.,Lee, R., & Hunt,M. (1995). Race andideology:African
visionadvertising.
JournalofPublicPolicy& Marketing,
14,48-59.
Clarke,J.N. (1992). Cancer,heartdisease,andAIDS: Whatdo themediatellus aboutthese
diseases?HealthCommunication,
4, 105-120.
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions
Hazell,Clarke/Race andGenderin theMedia
21
Blacksinmass
S. F. (1972). The perpetuation
ofracialstereotypes:
Colfax,J.D., & Sternberg,
circulation
ThePublicOpinionQuarterly,
36, 8-18.
magazineadvertisements.
EssenceCommunications,
Inc. (2006). Essence: Our company.Retrieved
May 8, 2006,from
http://www.essence.com/essence/ourcompany
of Blacks in magazineadvertisements:
R., & Schuman,H. (1984). The portrayal
Humphrey,
1950-1982.ThePublicOpinionQuarterly,
48, 551-563.
Inc. (2006). Jetmagazine:News.Retrieved
Johnson
May 8, 2006,from
Publishing
Company,
http://www.jetmag.com/assembled/news.html
and
in Ebonymagazine,1957-1989.Journalism
Leslie,M. (1995). Slow fadeto:Advertising
Mass Communication
72,426-435.
Quarterly,
in magazinesaimedat African
T., & Goulet,N. (1999). Genderadvertisements
McLaughlin,
inmagazinesaimedatCaucasians.SexRoles,
totheiroccurrence
A comparison
Americans:
40,61-71.
Vanessa Hazell is currently
completingher MA in counselingpsychologyat Yorkville
interests
inmedia
Canada.She hasresearch
NewBrunswick,
in
located
Fredericton,
University,
andcopingstyles.
riskandprotective
factors,
psychosocial
well-being,
analysis,psychological
of
thesisin 2005 underthesupervision
herhonor'sundergraduate
She completed
psychology
and
betweenexplicitand implicitself-esteem
therelationship
Dr. Christian
Jordan,
examining
bias.Thisis herfirst
theself-serving
publication.
in Waterloo,Ontario,
JuanneClarke is a medicalsociologistat WilfridLaurierUniversity
in thewaysthathealth,illness,and medicineareportrayed
interest
Canada,witha particular
in mass printmedia.She has recentlypublishedin Social Science and Medicine,Health
on thesetopics.
andtheJournalofHealthCommunication
Communication,
This content downloaded on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:36:01 AM
All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions