Swiffer’s recent advertisement for its newest mop received harsh backlash as soon as the campaign launched and for good reason. The woman featured in the ad closely resembles Rosie the Riveter. Rosie the Riveter was an iconic symbol from WWII that encouraged women to find work outside the home and to gain economic independence. However, in the Swiffer ad, the use of the Rosie the Riveter image further exemplifies female stereotypes; namely, that women are responsible for the housework—a notion that is clearly present in ads today, and a notion that influences the construction of social norms. According to Lisa Belkin, women still “do about twice as much around the house as men” because social norms dictate how society understands the gender-labor relationship (4). However, in today’s modern society, even though these norms persist, “gender should not determine the division of labor at home” (2). Moreover, the gender-labor relationship should not be influenced by the media’s deceptive and persuasive efforts in creating strict gender roles to sell products.
Belkin, Lisa. “When Mom and Dad Share it All.” New York Times. 15 6 2008: 1-16. Print.