Friday, August 5, 2011

Masculinity Sells: Targeting Males in Beer Ads

In the advertising world, products are rarely marketed solely based on their characteristics. Instead, they are often sold on the basis of seemingly unrelated factors, such as gender. This is perhaps most apparent in beer advertisements. They target male consumers through their portrayal of masculinity via the use of the male body and female objectification.

Beer ads often display a strong male physique in order to define masculinity. According to Katz, “one way that the system allows working class men (of various races) the opportunity for what Brod refers to as ‘masculine identity validation’ is through the use of their body as an instrument of power, dominance, and control” (Katz 351). In other words, men are able to assert their masculinity on the basis of their bodies. Beer advertisements reinforce this view by showing men with ideal, muscular bodies that represent what all males should aspire to if they want to be “real” men. They make male consumers believe that they can appear more manly by drinking their brand of beer.

Besides the use of the body, beer advertisements define a man’s masculinity on the basis of the women that are available to him. The females in beer ads are portrayed in a very sexual manner. There are physically attractive women wearing little to no clothing in suggestive poses. Jhally states, “in advertising, gender (especially for women) is defined almost exclusively along the lines of sexuality” (Jhally 253). Women are shown as sexual objects that are simply accessories to go along with the beer. The ads show that the reward for drinking their beer is appearing masculine, for which the ultimate reward is an unlimited supply of beautiful women.

Works Cited

“Budweiser.” Photograph. Individuality: The New Conformity. Web. 4 August 2011.

“Budweiser- so many buds.” Photograph. Beer Images. Web. 4 August 2011.

“Corona Extra.” Photograph. Web. 4 August 2011.

Jhally, Sut. “Image-Based Culture: Advertising and Popular Culture.” Gender, Race, and Class in Media: A Text-Reader. Eds. Gail Dines and Jean M. Humez. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2003. 249-257. Print.

Katz, Jackson. “Advertising and the Construction of Violent White Masculinity.” Gender, Race, and Class in Media: A Text-Reader. Eds. Gail Dines and Jean M. Humez. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2003. 349-358. Print.

“Keith Stone.” Photograph. Bleacher Report. Web. 4 August 2011.

“Samuel Adams.” Photograph. RifftRax Blog. Web. 4 August 2011.

“Skol Beer.” Photograph. Singapore Media Owners. Web. 4 August 2011.

“Ursus Beer ad.” Photograph. Beer Images. Web. 4 August 2011.


  1. When I first opened your blog page I was very surpised to see that we analyzed the same product! We even used the two of the same pictures which I thought was funny. Anyways, I liked the way you chose to analyze the marketing of beer because I feel as though we took somewhat different approaches.

    I really enjoyed the section that talked about the portrayal of the ideal male’s body in some advertisements. Seeing that most men do search for some type of “masculine identity validation” in the products they purchase, it makes sense why a beer advertisement would choose to do this. I also thought you chose very good quotes to back up your ideas. Each one of them seemed to be in the perfect spot.

    In regards to something you could have improved upon, I think it would have been appropriate if you included more pictures of men advertising beer in your collages to back up your first point. It may have also been eaiser to focus on one specific beer brand to target their specific effect on the beer industry in general.

    On the whole, I think you did a really great job! Enjoy the rest of your summer!

  2. Hi-
    I would love to comment extensively on everyone's blog posts!!! Please read the updated "Welcome" message on SOCS for the detailed reason for why it's taken me so long to comment on, and also grade these assignments! I rather post it there instead of here :o)

    I hope you'll understand that, in the interest of getting your grade submitted to PAWS by tomorrow, the commenting will have to be skipped and all feedback will be on SOCS in the rubric for this assignment under "Assessments."

    I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer!!!
    Take care,

  3. Great detailed information, I ll be visiting you more frequently, here is very interesting information.

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