Marketing and advertising are very interesting tools. Here's a cool little test. Check the following ad campaigns. If any of these ads rouse some sort of concern, then it's a good sign that you've retained some of the autonomous critical thinking faculties that Madison Avenue has tried to kill off over the course of your lifetime. If they don't bother you in the slightest...I want some of what you're smoking:
Translation: "In Africa, many kids would be glad to be worried about school."
Translation: "I'm waiting for my last day in school, the children in Africa still for their first one."
Translation: "Some teachers suck. No teachers sucks even more."
Translation: "In Africa, kids don't come to school late, but not at all."
The first four ads ran in Germany as part of their UNICEF campaign to raise funds and awareness about the need for school funding in Africa during 2007. However, it looks and sounds (from the translations) more like they're mocking the situation. Bottom line, somebody need some fire put to their ass for this one.
The two Sony PSP ads ran in the Netherlands in 2006. When Sony was approached about the potentially offensive nature of the campaign, they apparently felt absolved stating "All of the 100 or so images created for the campaign have been designed to show this contrast in colours of the PSPs , and have no other message or purpose." While the billboard ads stayed in place, the ads on their website were subsequently taken down following the controversy. Again, somebody needs some fire set to their ass for this one.
The last two ads were developed by Benetton in the early 1990s. Throughout their history, Benetton has made many a controversial move in attempts to personify their projected company image of "one color." However the Italian clothier's modes and methods of doing so remain questionable for many. The image of the white baby nursing the black woman's breast was pulled after the ad caused an uproar. The "devil and angel" ad caused a maelstrom of letter writing campaigns upon its debut.
If you were incensed by any or all of these ads, it is likely that you picked up on the central theme that these images attempt to convey: racial ideology. However playful or clever they may be, the psychological damage of ads such as these threaten to further deteriorate our global society. For those eracists that are devout believers that racism is an artifact of a bygone era, look at these ads once again with the following terms in mind and tell me if that don't slap you back into reality:
*Birth Of A Nation
* racial villification
(feel free to ad more in the comments section)
In the words of John Singleton, unlearn.