Gender in Ads an Advertisement Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

In the Calvin Klein jeans ad, it is he who is chased and who resists and fends off the female. The imagery is opposite to that of typical gender roles, in which female sexuality is restrained. The man's body is toned, muscular, and hairless. Even if he were more interested in the female behind him, he controls his passion admirably.

The Calvin Klein advertisement allows the female to unleash a deep sexual hunger. Her open mouth, biting action, wet hair, and grabbing motion all show she possesses an animalistic hunger and passion. The wet hair increases the elemental, wild feel of the advertisement. The background is a nebulous dark area, allowing the viewers to imagine any kind of scenario and put themselves into the ad. Target audiences will relate to the imagery on multiple levels: perceiving Calvin Klein "Double Black" Jeans as intensifying a man's innate sexuality and creating desire for the product in both genders. Desire is depicted in several ways: by the actual composition, by the subject matter and its subtext. The diagonal lines and the linking together of the two bodies move the eye around the picture and engender passion and hunger. Whether or not homosexuality is read into the advertisement, the core theme is desire.

Focusing on the male body vs. The female does seem to imply male homosexuality. Coupled with the man's furrowed brow and curious glance back at the woman also indicate that he is mildly amused at her antics but would have preferred to see a man taking his jeans off. The advertisement can, however, be read in multiple ways. Some viewers might focus purely on the animalism and wildness of desire: the woman's wet hair, her open mouth, and his naked torso. The name of the jeans is "Double Black," which plays on the phrase "double back." The man is looking back to see who is behind him.

Male sexuality is played up in the Calvin Klein advertisement for the "Double Black" jeans. The jeans are not featured prominently in the photograph; they are barely visible and only implied by their being grabbed at by the woman. Mostly, the viewer notices the man's torso. He oozes primal sexuality, and the advertisement creates an enormous and playful tension between the two figures. She finds the man so compelling as to rush up behind him with wet hair and pull down his pants, biting his behind in the process. Her body is not featured at all in the ad. Only the woman's wet hair, closed eyes, and open mouth signal her own sexuality. Gender roles are played with and subverted in the Calvin Klein ad: he is the tempter, and she is the wolf. He is bending over and in a prone position rather than being the aggressor. The pose is homoerotic, and she could have easily been a man.

Cite This Essay:

"Gender In Ads An Advertisement" (2009, February 26) Retrieved October 17, 2019, from

"Gender In Ads An Advertisement" 26 February 2009. Web.17 October. 2019. <>

"Gender In Ads An Advertisement", 26 February 2009, Accessed.17 October. 2019,