ADs THAT COULD BE BANNED TODAY
Previous generations and I were accustomed to certain advertising campaigns that obviously are appropriate for the culture and society of that period. But, if today we go to review some vintage advertisings or if this happen to younger people, some of them will leave us amazed.
The first ads that come to my mind now, and that nowadays appear manifestly against the tide, are those relating to smoking or inciting tobacco addiction. After anti-smoking campaigns and the appropriate prohibitions, although cigarettes advertising is banned in many countries, such an ad would only cause resentment and harsh criticism. Yet, if new generations watch these old advertising, will realize that less than 30 years ago, smoking was a status symbol, and often the States’ monopolies advertised cigarettes, earning millions by their selling, like it happened in Italy.
Who does not remember Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca?
As in many other vintage Hollywood movies, the cigarette became an indispensable “accessory”, a symbol sometimes even sexual that filled and reinforced the interpretation or the scene.
Although I am not an anti-feminist but for equal rights, an advertisement in which a woman appears as mother or housewife, should not shock so much. But, in fact, any advertising where woman is considered as object or that relegate her to the purely mother and housewife’s role, becomes anachronistic and provocative. Yet, sexist advertising campaigns have been several in the past. As you will see, some of them even instigate violence.
Do not be surprised if these old commercials are clearly racist, although for we Italians they were pretty inconceivable.
Ads with a clear sexual innuendo.
In other cases, children and adolescents have been used to advertise products for adults, and several advertising and marketing campaigns could be blamed for children’s sexualisation.