Gender Studies | Themes in Gender Studies: Gendered Ads, Media Fads and Global Consumerism
G205 | 13816 | Thomas-Williams


Advertising and other forms of print media—specifically Magazines—
were emerging industries at the turn of the twentieth century.
While the magazine is a medium of mass culture, it is also a primary
mode of dissemination of images and ideas through ads, together
these artifacts of popular culture were constitutive of the
development of an emergent American national character across race,
class, gender, and sexuality in the early 1900s.  In 2009, the
Hearst Corporation used 24,433,869 gallons of wastewater to convert
3,473 tons of wood into paper, which produced 3,596,693 pounds of
mulch waste to satisfy 2,933,000 U.S. subscribing Cosmopolitan
readers (just one of twenty popular Hearst titles available in
America).  The Hearst Corporation is just one diversified media
corporation implicated in a global matrix of “resource management,”
which implicitly involves the water and land rights of indigenous
peoples globally making our examination of “popular culture” extend
far beyond the scope of a critical content or semiotic analysis.
The sheer volume and regularity with which we are exposed to
advertising and magazines lends them to critical intellectual
inquiry. We will study a variety of theories and methods used in
contemporary gender/sexual scholarship on popular culture, and we
will examine a number of popular media texts – advertising,
magazines, films, songs, music videos, cybertexts, and television
shows.  This course explores how these specific media generates and
articulates our understandings of gender and sexuality and their
intersections with race and class on local and global scales.