Propaganda in Advertising – Blog 6

McDonald’s Advertisement

The advertisement linked above portrays two types of propaganda techniques: ‘Beautiful people and ‘oversimplification’, both of which relate to the look of the advertisement. The ‘Beautiful people’ approach is the most common form of propaganda technique because it provokes people to buy their product; perceived to unlock and ensure happiness. To meet this requirement, McDonalds chose to depict a snapshot in the life of an African American family, smiling as they are seated around a dinner table with a McDonald’s meal bag off-center to the picture. The second approach, ‘intentional vagueness’ occurs when an advertisement conveys a message that is left to be interpreted by the viewer. In the ad, the caption reads, “She deserves a break today” which oversimplifies – or assumes – the situation between the husband and wife. Don’t get me wrong, it is clear that “she” means the wife but it is over-assuming, biased statement; especially since the ad is race specific.

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