Essay on Promoting the Chace and Sanborn Coffee

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Sewanee University of the South
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The commercial is from the 1950s, promoting the Chace and Sanborn coffee (Meyers, 2011). The image used appears to be incredibly sexist, with a man spanking his wife at home from serving a bad coffee. It reveals the male chauvinism where women are scolded for failing to perform their role as housewives correctly. The advert shows that the place of women in the house and the in particular kitchen. The women do not get to be valued as a man, as she is meant to serve him.

In the 1950s women were homemakers, very few ladies had a job and when they did it would not last the whole day as men (Ritchie, 2011). The commercial was well placed at that time, and the society celebrated it since it reflected the culture at that point. The man in the image is seen punishing a woman for not performing her duty well in the kitchen as it is her major role. In those days men were considered the breadwinners and hence women had to please them. In those days gender violence was not an issue, it was praised as a way of keeping women well behaved. They were not considered partners in a relationship but were assigned a more subjective title and were also supposed to be submissive to the man. A woman was part of things that a man owned and that he would do with them as he, please. Men were considered the head of the family and the ultimate authority. Women were supposed to do all things as per the prescription of the husband. Violation of the guidelines led to untold punishment, and nobody could intervene for such issues.

Women were considered lesser being to men. Since the past, all societies have had a view towards men as powerful compared to women more especially during the agrarian revolution. Before the industrial revolution, men had to hunt, protect the home, and plow the fields for their families to get food. Men were considered to have the muscle stamina to accomplish that better than women. This gave men an automatic thrown to power and dominance (Wood, 1994). After the industrial revolution, women started also began to work in factories but still would not be paid equally as men even when doing the same job. The society had little faith in women in doing the things men can do. They were seen as capable of handling lighter jobs such cooking and caring for the home. This situation made men to perceive themselves better than women. Men would beat women when they failed to perform their duties well, for instance, preparing meals without an appealing taste. Men were like the judge of what women do, by setting the standards. They are why the advert seems to be friendly it appears to be telling women "if you do not want a beating from your husband by Chase and Sanborn coffee. The image shows the brutality that men show women and torture women have to experience to please a man. The commercial reveals how the society in the 1950s did not recognize gender parity and even women are happy with the status quo. The advert at that time might have been a favorite of women considering that they had been taught a secret for escaping violence at home.

Women were considered weaker vessels to be beaten by men (Wood, 1994). Assigning women to kitchen and management of the house was regarded as a light job, and men despised women for it. Men in the 1950s believed that women should be punished as children since they are not their match regarding physical and mental strength. The adverts show the husband holding the woman on his lap and spanking her with one hand. The women appear helpless, and the man seems to be using less effort to subject the wife thorough punishment for preparing a bad coffee. The women appear to be touching his neck as a signal for saying she is getting hurt and that she has learned her mistake. This posture should be for a parent and child and not a wife and a husband.

In conclusion, the commercial is from a 1950s coffee brand promotion. The image was appropriate for them based on the social and cultural standards in those days. However, it denoted three things the women are treated as housewives, Women are treated as weaker vessels to be beaten by men, and omen are considered fewer beings to men. The society during those days placed more value on men than women which was a sexist act. Currently, is considered gender discrimination and can earn a person a jail term.


Meyers, C. B. (2011). The problems with sponsorship in us broadcasting, 1930s1950s: perspectives from the advertising industry. Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, 31(3), 355-372.

Ritchie, R. C. (2011). The Housewife and the Modern: The Home and Appearance in Women's Magazines, 1954-1969. Women, 1960s.

Wood, J. T. (1994). Gendered media: The influence of media on views of gender. Genderedlives: Communication, gender and culture, 231-244.


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