It is no longer an economically viable option to pursue family life to the exclusion of professional life. Even in households with children (or especially in these households), it has become expected that both men and women would work outside the home. Too often, this trend is driven by economic circumstances rather than professional ambition as such.
It is furthermore significant that men do not occur in high frequency in the advertisements scrutinized. This appears to indicate that men are more oriented towards both family and career, or at least that they are not so concerned with the image of the condo market as their female counterparts. Being more oriented towards both family and career makes more sense for the modern man, as this has been the male paradigm since before the beginning of the female struggle towards more fulfillment than only family life. Men may have a greater tendency to focus on their career while also having a family. It the female, on the other hand, the directive towards nurture often wars with the directive towards a career to such an extent that the modern woman, in reaction to the past might opt exclusively for a career, at least during the first part of her professional life.
Of greatest significance is the exclusion of the visible minority from condo advertising. Although the perception of the advertisements for the purpose of this study is somewhat limited, as mentioned above, I do however believe that it bears mention. In a society that claims equality for al sectors of its citizens, I find the inequality of visible minority representation in condo ads interesting. Certainly this sector of society has now advanced, through struggle to an economic status where they can afford this type of housing. It is also possible that demographic research indicates a low interest level among this group for this particular type of housing. Visible minority groups may for example, like men, attach greater importance to family life than to their respective professions. Their higher economic status could also mean that they can afford larger family homes and greater distances from their work and entertainment locations. Furthermore, such families will need parks, schools, hospitals, and other institutions that families generally require.
The exclusion of the lower classes makes sense in terms of status and work. It might be assumed that they would not be catered for in condo advertising, as the lower classes tend to opt for cheaper or free housing options. Furthermore, these classes tend to be employed at workplaces that are not in the condo proximity, and condo living would further inconvenience them. This can however be construed as an instance of inequality in condo advertising, as lower class citizens are regarded in a certain manner by those in higher classes. In this case, condo advertising perpetuates the social structures mentioned in the introduction.
Of less interest is the exclusion of the elderly and children. It has already been mentioned that the condo market caters for the single person, as a result of its physical dimensions and proximity to the workplace rather than family-oriented settings. The exclusion of children therefore makes sense in this regard. The exclusion of the elderly is also based upon the reality of their situation rather than upon inequality as such. The elderly generally need hospitals and nursing homes. As they advance in years, the time arrives when they take permanent residence with a caregiver or family member. The condo dimension and setup does not cater for such a lifestyle, and the assumption that the elderly would not be interested makes sense in this regard.
In conclusion, the most significant instances of inequality in condo advertising is the exclusion of visible minority and lower class citizens. These exclusions appear to perpetuate the sociological view of these groups as somehow unable to attain the means or necessity for condo housing. While this can be seen as viable in terms of the lower classes, there are many visible minority groups who have empowered themselves by means of business or high profile work. This could therefore be seen as inequality in such advertising.
On the other hand, one might argue that demographic information has indicated a greater tendency towards family housing for this group. This will only become clear upon deeper investigation, for which there is no scope in this case.
It is also significant that such an enormous majority of representation is taken by the middle-aged, upper/middle class white woman. Clearly this is the market that advertisers think is most likely to desire condo housing. This is a viable view. An increasing number of females are electing not to marry, but rather to pursue their careers to the exclusion of family life. This is then seen as an emerging market for condo housing.
The limitations of the study indicate that much deeper investigations are necessary to establish the true inequality of condo advertising. Investigations into demographic information, for example could reveal that choices made by certain groups preclude their requirement for condo housing. Investigating these advertisements and their tendency towards unequal representation however does raise some significant questions in terms of social prejudices and trends. A wider investigation into general advertising trends for various products could also yield significant results in this regard. It is therefore a very interesting starting point to spark further investigation into advertising and its relationship to…
Sources Used in Document:
Brym, R.J. (2008). New Society. Toronto: Thomson & Nelson