February 16, 2005

Men and Boys in Advertising

In the absence of solid, real life role models, boys learn about manhood from the media. In an era where kids see 20,000 to 40,000 commercials a year, the picture of manhood that's projected is a powerful influence. Here's what the people at Children Now say:

"In the last few years, much public attention has been focused on the issue of how boys are faring in America. In the search for answers, parents, public officials, academics, and child advocates have been looking more and more closely at the role of media in boys' development. Boys, in their daily media consumption, can see various types of men, from stay-at-home dads to professional wrestlers. But despite the broad range of images, boys get consistent messages that they must be strong and tough, and must never show their vulnerability. Advertising reinforces similar messages."

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