oa Communicare : Journal for Communication Sciences in Southern Africa - Die uitbeelding van die vroulike rol in advertensies in Suid-Afrikaanse vrouetydskrifte

Volume 8, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0259-0069



In South Africa there is growing concern regarding the manner in which women are portrayed in advertisements. Up to now no studies have been undertaken in support or otherwise of this concern. However, theories of mass communications support the fact that advertising is powerful enough to prescribe and reflect the existing values and norms of the society. Advertising is also a form of communication of persuasion and influence. By means of techniques of persuasion, views and behaviour can be influenced in a direction determined by the initiator. These techniques determined include typecasting, an important element of the study which was undertaken. The purpose of the study was to determine the manner in which South African women are portrayed in South African women's magazines. For this purpose it was necessary to review the role of women in Western Society and to determine which historical factors had influenced this role. The hypotheses for the analysis were derived from literature and research relating to the portrayal of women in American advertising, and from South African seminar material and a few articles on this subject which could be located. The most significant finding is that women in South-African magazine advertisements are depicted relatively free from stereotyped images and traditional ideas. This reflects the fact that marketers and advertisers have accepted the changing values and norms relating to the role of women.

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