Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Media Moment_ Powerball

So... as I'm walking to the F train on 63rd and Lexington after an arduous day of classes, a telephone booth that had this ad in it's glass display caught my eye. It's simple to the naked eye. It tells a story: a white woman, with two kids, won the lottery and went shopping for market goods. Her son is operating their plane which was bought by their winnings. They're "landed" in a parking lot and there's a line which states "Yeah, that kind of rich." I found the ad quite comical but somewhat sexist in a way. Primarily because the woman/mother is doing the grocery shopping and not a male figure. I'm not saying that a man should be doing grocery shopping instead of a woman but why can't he? There is clearly a man walking towards the supermarket but I think he could have been placed there just so the advertiser (New York Lottery Powerball) wouldn't be questioned as they are in my post. 
And so my question to you is: In a country where a man is looked upon as the figure who brings home the income and a lady's responsibilities are to take care of the home and children, does this ad fit or break that stereotype, which history has known to be the norm of society? Women today, in my opinion, are more prevalent in the workforce and hold great social power as do men, and so I find it somewhat offensive that here, a woman is only able to take care of kids, do grocery shopping, and handle heavy machinery (which can also be a misinterpretation being that her son looks to be the pilot of the helicopter!) 


  1. Very interesting ad Vincent. I've seen this new stream of Powerball ads, but not this specific one. It certainly reinforces the cultural stereotype that women are domestic beings, meant to handle the children and all household duties.
    Personally, I grew up in a household where my mother was the breadwinner and my father for much of my life was a stay at home dad. He handled everything from cooking and cleaning to laundry, grocery shopping, helping us kids with homework, yardwork, everything and anything. The traditional archetype was broken in my house and I actually felt empowered by it. I felt more respect for both my parents because they simply did what needed to be done and damned the stereotypes and norms. I would love to see more ads counter cultural stereotypes. Thanks for bring this ad to my attention.

  2. It's obvious that this advertisement definitely supports the stereotypical household hierarchy, however, if a homemaker was "that kind of rich," why would she be food shopping at the local grocery she's probably used to attending even before she won the Powerball? Forget a helicopter, I'd hire people to do all the shopping, cooking and cleaning so I can enjoy time with my children and husband/significant other.
    Furthermore, I can't agree more with Matt and how his parents defied the cultural stereotypes- there should totally be more couples out there comfortably doing the same. I myself love power tools, building things and basketball and my boyfriend loves to cook and while many times, people wonder how this is, it works out beautifully for us. In my case it's not "The key to a mans heart is through his belly"... its actually quite the opposite :-)