A question about Asda's Christmas advert

(124 Posts)

When I first saw it (and every time since tbh) my gut reaction was that it is sexist. The woman does all the work while the man does nothing. It's insulting to both genders.

But I have seen numerous posts on here, and been told by several friends, that this is a fairly good representation of Christmas for them and their friends. So my question is this:

Is the advert still sexist if it is actually representative? I think it is but I'm struggling to articulate why.

PeazlyPops Sat 10-Nov-12 18:56:42

I'd say so, because it reinforces the unfair stereotype, and says its ok?

But is it still an unfair stereotype if it's truly representative? If, for example, 70% of women say that that is how their Christmas is - is it still a stereotype? Or just a reflection of the majority experience?

I think I'm going round in circles. confused

kickassangel Sat 10-Nov-12 19:54:31

Just because it is, doesn't mean it should be.

Haven't seen the ad. But, basically, something that highlights a sexist element of
Our society and exploits it for
Their own profit is sexist. If they used the same stereotype but used it to challenge and undermine that stereotype it would be different.

Either way, using sexual stereotypes is lazy, but then adverts are hardly where we're going to see high falluting morals portrayed through visual art.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 10-Nov-12 22:27:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Cortana Sat 10-Nov-12 22:39:51

I think it's still sexist.

Women were (and still are in some cases) paid less than men for doing the same job. Even if 90% of women were paid less for the same job it is still sexist. It being a situation in which the majority of women are in doesn't make it less so.

FWIW I think it showed neither gender in a good light.

Thank you, you've helped me get my head round it!

Darkesteyes Sun 11-Nov-12 02:05:26

Found this on the everydaysexism website.

Anonymous via email 2012-11-10 16:05
I saw the Asda Christmas advert for the first time this evening after it was mentioned on the everyday sexism twitter feed. I work for Asda and about a month ago had a briefing for the "Golden Quarter", basically the 3 months leading to Christmas. This briefing basically outlined the Asda's marketing strategy running up until Christmas and to summarise "it's all about Mum's" and apparently Mum's want low prices so they can feel the benefit in their purses. It appears that Asda seems to think that the only people that do any sort of supermarket shopping is Mother's. A lot of stereotyping of gendered roles going on. It frustrated me because there was nothing I could do, I'm starting to notice a lot of sexism within Asda. Asda also has a strict social media agreement we have to sign which makes sharing such stories online a bit risky if I want to remain in a job.

InNeedOfBrandy Sun 11-Nov-12 02:12:06

I think it's sexist and reinforces that women have to do all the work. My dm doesn't agree with me and says Christmas wouldn't happen without mums blabla and they do do most of the work. I then say of that's the case then it's not fair and you don't, which she says well she's lucky to have a man and us to do the dishes ect ect and not leave it all up to her. My mum is quite happy to let my step dad be king of the castle though.

nobutts Sun 11-Nov-12 10:23:52

According to Aibu anyone who complained about it doesn't have a life. So that's solved that issue!

LadyMargolotta Sun 11-Nov-12 13:02:31

Obviously us women can't get a life because we are all too busy running around like headless chickens getting everything perfect for everyone else at Christmas.

InSPsFanjoNoOneHearsYouScream Sun 11-Nov-12 13:08:50

I honestly can't be offended by an advert for a supermarket.

It happens at Christmas where the mum does do it all. It happened in my family anyway.

I don't see the issue with an advert.

TheFoosa Sun 11-Nov-12 13:13:15

I agree with Fanjo

I think more women will find it amusing than offensive, merely because it is an accurate reflection of their lives

at least in my family

and they will like Asda more because Asda 'understands' them

44SoStartingOver Sun 11-Nov-12 13:13:25

If I were in control of ASDA's strategic marketing, I would be planning a campaign which included the January new Year start.

I believe that most applications for divorce peak in January (who could be surprised if every household is like the ASDA one) so I would feature

January -
setting up a separate household on a budget. Possibly including pink household items which newly separated women MUST want. Nowt so empowering as a new pink kettle ladies!

New bedding so the dc can stay overnight at dad's new house

Mum packing backpacks with snacks and treats to take to dad's house

Perhaps the early morning dash by Dad to 24 hour ASDA to buy extra school uniform (oops!)

February -
Mum buying a lovely new George Outfit after planning a first date with some idiot she has found on an online dating website

Dad buying a bottle of discount scotch to cheer himself up on his first single valentines day

The DC buying a 49p card and polyester rose to send to mum - (work that guilt button ASDA)

March/April
Mum and Dad buying competitively large easter eggs to ensure the children love them best

May/June
mum starting her bikini body diet - so she can 'feel good about' herself

July/August
Mum and dad battling over holiday childcare and buying loads of garden toys and ice creams to try to settle the children

September
Back to school - mum and dad buying separate uniforms makign sure they dont get left at the other parents house

October
Mum buys a lovely new polyester suit for £25 for the divorce hearing - yay for ASDA

oops time for crimbo ads

Cynical?

InSPsFanjoNoOneHearsYouScream Sun 11-Nov-12 13:14:54

What about the adverts that make out like men are useless like Very?

Nothing gets said about them.

AbigailAdams Sun 11-Nov-12 13:18:26

Of course things get said about those adverts. All the bloody time.

InSPsFanjoNoOneHearsYouScream Sun 11-Nov-12 13:20:34

I haven't seen anything said about them just this ASDA one.

If you look hard enough people will find sexism in anything.

I agree with Fanjo too.

From a marketing perspective, if they did an advert that painted the picture feminists wanted to see, I don't think it would be relevant to the majority of families where the mum does do most of that stuff. I do, my mum does, all my friends do. My DH wouldn't bother sending cards to anyone, wouldn't put decorations up, would forget to buy most of the presents - let alone wrap them - and so on... And no, I'm not going to leave the bastard.

AbigailAdams Sun 11-Nov-12 13:27:57

Everytime someone mentions sexism in adverts someone comes on "but what about those cleaning ads that make men look incompetent". Without. Fail. It has happened here. Only not about a cleaning ad. Some other ad I haven't seen so can't comment on.

Invariably the ad mentioned shows a man being incompetent at some traditionally female role which just perpetuates gender stereotypes and the drudge of cleaning, organising Christmas, shopping or whatever is seen to be done sooo much better than women so let's leave them to it, hey.

It is sexist. We don't have to look for it. It is how society is constructed.

MrsSchadenfreude Sun 11-Nov-12 13:28:23

It's quite representative of my Christmas, but I am a bit controlling about it all. And I wouldn't be sitting on the pouffee. I'd have booted a man or child to squat on that. After all that cooking, I'd want a proper seat.

I don't know that I thought it was sexist first time I saw it - just a ridiculously silly and un-true to life advert. My first thought was that it was quite insulting to men. Perhaps those mean that I do think it was sexist?

My Dad was always the one that cooked christmas dinner (and every sunday roast) in my house when I grew up. We went as a family to the supermarket with two trollies to stock up for Christmas altogether - it was a big thing for us as children, and even as teenages! In my house now DH and I share the cooking, although probably on the whole DH does more of it and he certainly does the big shop nearly every weekend with DD (not yet 3) whilst I have a cup of tea or do something else.

Actually reading back my post now, I think I probably do think it is a bit sexist! I would be interested to see any actual reserach on who does the shopping and cooking at Christmas, as the majority of my friends and their families are not represented by this at all.

kickassangel Sun 11-Nov-12 14:12:19

The issue with an advert is that it perpetuates an imbalance that exploits women. Just by seeing it you receive the message that it is normal and therefore OK for life to be like this.

Adds could just as easily show mum getting together her list for food, presents etc, then sending the H out to get them and she puts up decorations to surprise him on his return. They hug = happy Christmas. That would be an appealing image.

Or BOTH parents referring to Saturday being a special day, the kids are going to the grandparents, mum and dad will have some special alone time. Lots of coy looks and sly winks about it. Show the kids rushing off gleefully to the grandparents and mum and dad scamper to the car for their special treat... Shopping in Asda for the presents and food! That would appeal to just about every family member, focuses on the fun side without showing the hard work, makes Asda seem like a treat fun day out, as well as having everything you need for the whole of Christmas etc etc.

Tbh honest, any advert that reminded me what a pita Christmas is would not make me rush off to their store.

SamSmalaidh Sun 11-Nov-12 14:20:34

Of course it is sexist!

Just because it reflects and reinforces a sexist society, and many women unfortunately are still in sexist relationships with sexist men, doesn't make it less sexist.

CarpeThingy Sun 11-Nov-12 14:32:14

Did anyone see the episode of "The Thick Of It" where two carers had been invited in for some type of "recognition" event? All hell breaks loose, carers left forgotten on the sidelines. Every so often the Prime Minister charges past, spots the carers and goes "Wbnderful to meet you. Wonderful. Such vital work you do."

If the ad really does reflect reality for most ASDA shoppers, then it's sexist for the same reason that was being brought out there. A patronising sop to the exploited, making a virtue out of the exploitation. "We really couldn't do without you, you know." The idea - ridiculous, of course - is that the target audience will get a nice warm feeling appreciated and keep right on - oh, hang on. sad

SP I was on two threads yesterday where sexist adverts were discussed and the sexism against men was discussed. I can find links if you want them.

It constantly amazes me that the portrayal in the Asda advertise claimed to be the reality for so many women. It certainly isn't in my house, and I don't know many couples where the woman tolerates being treated like a drudge.

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