The Confident Woman

Chris BeecherAdvertisement Analysis, Argument, New Voices, Previous Editions, Responding to a Text

In the 1960s, Folger’s Coffee produced a commercial that shows a lady preparing coffee for her husband. The wife prepares the breakfast for her husband and serves him. The husband takes a sip of the coffee and walks away, making the wife feel extremely bad about the situation. The wife tries to apologize to her husband,but he just goes away to work. This causes the wife to become really upset. Later the scene is shifted where the wife is talking to her friend while preparing food and tells her that her husband is really upset. Her friend gives her an idea for cheering her husband. In another scene,the couple are seated and the husband sips the coffee and gets really excited. It is because of the Folger’s coffee. Her satisfaction lies in the satisfaction of her husband. If the coffee was not nice, then it would make her feel terrible and if her husband would get upset. It made it look like she was completely dependent on her husband, and if things did not do the way her husband wanted she would feel really depressed. This was a common thought of a woman in 1960’s, which the commercial talks about. This shows how women were treated back then and how they were worried and lacked confidence, thinking their husbands would leave them. If the husbands would leave them, they would have to go through a lot of drama as they were not considered to be equal to men. It was the time when women completely depended on men, for money and also emotional well-being.

By contrast, the Pantene Company took out recently has a commercial with the tagline, “Not Sorry.” Firstly, the advertisement talks about how woman are the ones who are usually saying “sorry” to men. The scene starts where a woman is sitting in the conference room and is hesitant about her ideas and apologizes. The other scene is shifted to a woman opening a door and she apologizes as she entered the door.  The other scene is when a man comes and sits next to a lady and then the puts up his leg up and sits. It is not the woman’s fault, but still she apologizes. Similar scenes keep coming up when a lady opens the car door and still apologizes. Another scene is when a woman hands her baby to her husband and again apologizes for it. It is seen that the scene is shifted with tag lines all over that says “be strong and shine,” all the scenes are repeated showing women as more confident, and at the same time makes them be very nice. It is seen that the conference room scene, the man sitting next to the woman scene, all are repeated with the woman being at the same level as the men, without apologizing. It makes it look like women have grown and do not need to apologize unnecessarily like how it was in previous times.

Both the ads show the different cultural trends. The Folger’s coffee advertisement shows the different ways a woman was seen in the past. She had to always think before she spoke. In the commercial the woman is extremely scared because if her husband gets upset he might leave her. This was the belief of women in the past. Women always had to think before doing anything, as they did not want to be left out alone. The opposite can be seen in the commercial for Pantene. Women can be more confident and not apologize for things that do not require apologies. The commercial conveys a strong statement about women and shows that they can build up the confidence. It is seen in the commercial that there is no reason for a woman to keep saying sorry for small things. Women can do everything on their own without taking help from men, and with this change in attitude it can clearly be seen that women stand equally to men.


Works Cited

”Not Sorry I #ShineStrong Pantene.” YouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2015.

“Sexist Coffee Ad  (ca.  1960s).” YouTube. YouTube,  n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2015.