Vintage Sexism (smoking misogyny edition)

Thanks to Katie for the link.

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  • Aimee

    Katie, are you in my FSW451 class? We just talked about this ad yesterday.

  • ShifterCat

    Never mind running after him — I would hurl something from a distance.
    And what are those things on her eyelids? Spiders?

  • Blitzgal

    Heh, every single random product will get men laid if ad agencies have anything to do with it.
    Actually I think there was a guy employing this tactic at my bus stop on Monday. He just got dirty looks.

  • Matt

    This one’s been circulating around Facebook for a while. My question is what era this is from. If it was before porn culture had really gone mainstream, then maybe the obvious ejaculatory references wouldn’t have been picked up by enough people, but if not, I’m surprised the company wasn’t worried about a backlash – not because of the sexism, but because of the pornographic nature of the ad.

  • Appetite for Equal Rights

    UGHHHHH! Seriously?!
    I used to intern at an all-girl ad agency where we would work on “flipping” (rejecting) any ads we absolutely hated – to let other ad agencies know what isn’t okay. This is undoubtedly an ad we would unanimously flip. I can’t imagine what was going through the heads of the people (ahem, men) who created this.

  • Kaethe

    Six months after I quit smoking I dreamed that I walked by a young Donald Sutherland (circa Eye of the Needle). He was smoking. He blew smoke in my face. I fell instantly in love, and in fact, followed him everywhere.

  • Rachel_Setzer

    “Blow it in her face”?! Really? They went with that? I find it hard to believe, regardless of whether it was before the pornification of our culture or not, that the men who made this ad weren’t going for ejaculatory references. They may not have vocalized it to each other while sitting around smoking their Tipalets and trying to come up with a caption for this image — but they were all thinking it.

  • Katie

    [I'm not the Katie who submitted it]
    Feministing is cracking me up today- Sara Haskins, this ridiculous thing, and clicking the link shows one of those “You Can’t Fight the Axis if You Get VD” posters.
    It’s just so… dumb! It’s obviously sexist, but the ad’s intended pun is… women love the smell of your breath? This is more chivalrous than lighting the woman’s cigarette? If she’s temporarily blinded and coughing, she’ll grope your trousers as she tries to find the exit?

  • ElaineK

    If you think that’s horrible, you should see this
    Something called Shower Power??? And it’s present day.

  • ShelbyWoo

    That was disturbing. And, how come that is just marketed toward dudes? Like a gal doesn’t need something to hang on to whilst having sex in the shower? Selfish (and sexist) is what that is.
    If she’s temporarily blinded and coughing, she’ll grope your trousers as she tries to find the exit?
    Too funny! I don’t get it either. When was blowing smoke in someone’s face anything but rude?

  • Matt

    @Rachel Setzer – I’m sure the people who MADE the ad thought of it. They probably mentioned it in the meeting. What I’m saying is, depending on when it’s from, I’d assume there’d be a worry about a public backlash, because blatant suggestions of such a pornographic nature haven’t really been kosher in mainstream advertising ’till fairly recently (not that sex hasn’t been used, just that the presentation has had to be a bit more subtle).

  • everybodyever

    First of all: What misogynistic dude wants a woman to follow him anywhere?
    Second: The copy says “you get smoking satisfaction without inhaling smoke.” Stay cancer-free by puffing your grape-flavored cigarette smoke (do you think that tastes like cough syrup? sno-cones? gross) at other people!

  • colleen

    So dirty and yet… yea just dirty!
    Blow anything in my face and I’ll be throwing things!

  • Keri

    ElaineK, I don’t see why that is so awful? I mean, it’s a sex toy. It’s supposed to be blatant.

  • a.k.a. Ninapendamaishi

    “stick it to her” is not exactly respectful language…

  • open_sketch

    I know I’m going to get some flak for this (not that I won’t deserve it) but I question the Vintage Sexism series in general. What purpose does it serve other than to get people outraged over ads from a bygone era? I thought moving forward was supposed to be a major factor in feminism. I know it’s not really my place, but could I suggest that there is enough sexism in the modern age to worry about without digging into the past to confirm that, yes, men have always been assholes.
    By the way, I’d guess this ad ran in the late 60s, likely 1967-68.

  • Ali

    This is sickening because it shows that men have to do something great for us to follow! when we could easily think about doing something on our own!

  • Steven

    @ open_sketch
    Your coming across as way to deferential. Your making a valid point. Of course its your place to issue constructive criticism.
    And of course the response that would be tendered is ya have to have a sense of history and seeing blatant sexism helps ya identify subtle or implicit sexism.
    And about that Shower Power dodad… My wife and I have almost killed one another in the damn shower. I suggest ya get a bathtub mat first; get some traction under your feet first.

  • kurd55

    Wow! I didn’t know ashtray breath attracted the babes like that! BO must make chicks real horny—right?

  • open_sketch

    To Steven
    First of all, the idea that one shouldn’t be deferential in this situation is, in my opinion, somewhat offensive to the people that maintain this site. I am a white male, I have no place here that is not granted to me by the goodwill of my betters. If I’m going to comment or criticize something they do, I’d damn well better be deferential.
    Moving on, modern society is positively filled to bursting with absolutely blatant sexism. We live in a society which run ads that outright encourage rape, daemonize woman, idealize men, prevents an entire half of the human race from utilizing their superior intelligence by basing their entire worth on their appearance and marginalizes them in every possible way, from lower wages to discrimination in employment to legal rulings to more expensive everyday items. There should be more than enough modern examples of ‘blatant’ sexism that the good people reading this site can do something about, rather than bringing up old crimes against humanity. This is a horrible, horrible image, but I’ll be seriously surprised if we have not produced far more offensive works in the last decade, at the most conservative.

  • DizzyMissLizzy

    Did anyone notice the text on the bottom right begins: “hit her with…” Domestic violence + pornographic image, oh boy.
    Surely it isn’t new that blowing smoke in someone’s face is rude, regardless of whether it’s Tangy Cherry flavored.

  • Steven

    You don’t have to crawl on broken glass, thats all I am sayn.
    And your betters? How does equality lead to anyone being your better?

  • mags

    if you want to see something even scarier, click on the link to the blog where it was found and look at the ad directly below.
    i guess domestic violence used to sell.

  • open_sketch

    The people who run this site do all sorts of positive things for female equality, as if running the site wasn’t already enough, like writing books, being involved in protests and rallies, and so forth. I’m just some loser who belongs to a gender that have oppressed people like that for thousands of years. By my very nature, I’m at best a neutral force for equality, and therefore, they are clearly my betters.
    If men and women were equal in opportunities based on their own skills and intelligence, women would be in charge of absolutely everything. The reason the patriarchy exists, in my opinion, is because men are terrified of women and at some basic level aware that their control stems only from bias and would disappear instantly without the crutch of social favor. If this is true, which I believe is the case, the way to dismantle the patriarchy is to accept one’s place in a society where such bias is removed.
    As for crawling on broken glass, a little humility never hurt anyone. It is preferable to the blind arrogance displaced by most members of my gender.

  • Cecelia

    Goodness… are you sure that she’ll follow you everywhere, lol!

  • Destra

    Irregardless as to the porn overtones, blowing smoke in someone’s face has always been a sign of disrespect. No matter the era. Imagine if the man was spitting in her face instead. It’d make just as much sense as this one (and it’d be just as sexist).

  • Nothing Sacred

    I have this as a postcard in a book called “You Mean a Woman Can Open It?” It has some of the most horrifically sexist ads of all time, and for some reason I find them disgustingly, absurdly hilarious. The one above was my (very pro-feminist) boyfriend’s choice for most absurd, but I think these two are pretty bad:

  • leighbee

    ughhh this is so disrespectful. not only does she have arachnids on her eyes, the look on her face isn’t passion, or desire, or even yielding–it’s just blank. ridiculous.
    p.s im so sorry to have to say this, i do have uppity nitpicking but i’d like to anyway ::: irregardless isn’t a word, it just isn’t. regardless.

  • leighbee

    ughhh this is so disrespectful. not only does she have arachnids on her eyes, the look on her face isn’t passion, or desire, or even yielding–it’s just blank. ridiculous.
    p.s im so sorry to have to say this, i do hate uppity nitpicking but i’d like to anyway ::: irregardless isn’t a word, it just isn’t. regardless.

  • gopher

    Appetite for Equal Rights,
    What all-woman ad agency did you work for?
    Clearly, this ad is crap! What they didnt show you is all the smoke coming out of his mouth when she kicked him in the stomach and joined the 70s feminist movement.

  • Tom

    Wait, Blowing rancid smoke in woman’s faces doesn’t cause them to desire you over all things? Damn you vintage advertising!

  • Steve-O

    This ad is so stupid. Any man who would buy one of those based on this ad is even more stupid!

  • Devonian

    I’m more freaked out by the pig carving himself up.
    Also that shaving baby. There’s something eerie about a baby shaving…

  • Liz M

    Wow, NothingSacred! What is that second ad even FOR?! I couldn’t tell…

  • Kate

    Open_sketch, you’re absolutely right that there is a ton of sexist advertising today that is far more harmful (because it’s actually aimed at us, not at people 40 years ago, and is shaping the opinions of people NOW). But I think it’s interesting to see a past perspective too, just so we can compare how things have gotten better, what things we still have to fix, and how misogyny displays itself in different decades. Some people may have fun getting angry about the messages, but some of us just need a laugh at the desperate men of yesteryear. :)

  • Cicada Nymph

    My grandparents are pretty oblivious to any sexual innuendo so I don’t know if the line would have been so obviously obscene back then. That ad of the husband spanking his wife is really offensive though. The pig carving himself up is just plain disturbing. I think if I was younger it would probably have been prominently featured in recurring nightmares.