Date: 1989
Brand: Virginia Slims
Manufacturer: Philip Morris
Campaign: Women's Liberation
Theme: Targeting Women
Keywords: Woman, female, empowerment, liberation, fashion, young adult, Menthol, lights, African American, fashion

Comment: This ad for Virginia Slims, a cigarette brand marketed exclusively to women, features a beautiful, young, African American woman walking confidently with a cigarette in her gloved hand. Her outfit is loud and revealing, with a short, yellow pencil skirt and a strapless top which exposes much of her chest. The word Virginia Slims is stamped onto the ad as if it is part of her body, working meticulously with the lines of her figure as if to indicate that this fresh, modern woman is synonymous with Virginia Slims.

Women's Liberation

One of the most common techniques tobacco companies employ in order to target women is women s liberation. Specifically, these advertisements show a woman in a position of power over a man, while being careful to keep the power-play light, carefree, and a bit flirtatious. The ads are prudent, hoping not to offend anyone while appearing to take sides, so to speak, with women. Often, these ads distract from the position of power Big Tobacco itself holds over both sexes, by pitting women against men instead of against Big Tobacco.

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