Presentation Title

Cigarette Advertisements in 1941 and 1946

Faculty Mentor

Michaela Reaves

Start Date

18-11-2017 11:15 AM

End Date

18-11-2017 11:30 AM

Location

15-1823

Session

Humanities 1

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

humanities_letters

Abstract

Historically, popular culture reflects the attitudes and priorities of an era. After World War I the print culture of ladies’ magazines emphasized the growth and fortune of the United States during the Roaring Twenties. Readers dreamed of becoming wealthy and famous so marketing efforts concentrated on portraying starlets and “posh women” in ads up to 1942. During the Great Depression, cigarette companies continued the trend, mirroring society’s desire for a return to happier times by creating advertisements that portrayed wealthy women smoking their brand of cigarettes in order to convince readers that their success depended on smoking the same brand of cigarette. By 1945, however, the United States was a war machine based on technological superiority and scientific achievement. Cigarette advertisements began to utilize the major technological advancements achieved during the war instead of popular celebrities of the prewar years. An analysis of the print culture of cigarette advertisements, in McCall’s, a women’s magazine published from 1887 to 1990, demonstrates how companies changed their advertising to exploit the norms of society in the prewar and postwar era.

Summary of research results to be presented

Post-war cigarette brands mirrored this change using a more scientific approach to selling their product, rather than the wealthy celebrities of the prewar era. Analysis of cigarette advertisements from 1945-1946 demonstrates this new scientific approach to advertising.

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Nov 18th, 11:15 AM Nov 18th, 11:30 AM

Cigarette Advertisements in 1941 and 1946

15-1823

Historically, popular culture reflects the attitudes and priorities of an era. After World War I the print culture of ladies’ magazines emphasized the growth and fortune of the United States during the Roaring Twenties. Readers dreamed of becoming wealthy and famous so marketing efforts concentrated on portraying starlets and “posh women” in ads up to 1942. During the Great Depression, cigarette companies continued the trend, mirroring society’s desire for a return to happier times by creating advertisements that portrayed wealthy women smoking their brand of cigarettes in order to convince readers that their success depended on smoking the same brand of cigarette. By 1945, however, the United States was a war machine based on technological superiority and scientific achievement. Cigarette advertisements began to utilize the major technological advancements achieved during the war instead of popular celebrities of the prewar years. An analysis of the print culture of cigarette advertisements, in McCall’s, a women’s magazine published from 1887 to 1990, demonstrates how companies changed their advertising to exploit the norms of society in the prewar and postwar era.