Advertising and the Feminisation of Men in Korea Sample Essay

The traditional standards for male attraction seemed to be the inverse-triangle molded organic structure. musculuss. wide shoulders and a graven face. These are all indexs of high degrees of testosterone. and would be desirable harmonizing to evolutionary psychological science. Then the coming of the metrosexual adult male broke a new frontier. doing it acceptable for work forces to care about their visual aspect. However. there is now a new standards for male beauty that is wholly different. and some attractive work forces now look like adult females. Ren a member of a freshly launched Kpop group NU’EST. for illustration. has frequently been mistaken for a miss. and he is in fact praised for this muliebrity. He is non the lone 1. with Taemin from Shinee and Dongho from U-Kiss have besides been said to be ‘prettier than a girl’ . There has even been a term coined for work forces like this – Kkotminam ( ??? ) . or “Flower Boys” .

Furthermore. there are certain tendencies in the Korean amusement industry that were one time the exclusive detention of females – jewellery. for illustration. The erosion of multiple decorations seems mostly a feminine pattern that has been adopted by male graven images in Korea. In add-on. Korean graven images and histrions now often endorse cosmetics and skincare trade names. For case. Shinee now fronts a run for Etude House. Kim Hyun Joong smiles for The Face Shop and Song Joong Ki is the face of Tony Moly. The fact that they now dominate a infinite traditionally occupied by adult females indicates that the industry is taking to market their merchandises in a really specific manner. every bit good as the fact that at that place seems to be a relaxation of the ideals that constitute male beauty. Shinee backing Etude House – including lip rouges. mascaras. etc.

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But non merely are the male graven images in Korea expected to look more feminine. they are in a manner forced to act more femininely every bit good. Male graven images are routinely asked to execute dances belonging to the miss groups. execute cunning ‘aegyo’ behavior every bit good as cross-dress – non ever for humorous intents either. In an episode of Idol Maknae Rebellion. all of the participating graven images were made to traverse frock and make up one’s mind which of them made the prettiest miss. The fetishisation of male graven images as adult females seems instead uneven. and decidedly does non emerge of course. given that they are overthrowing millennia-long ideals of conventional male beauty. In this paper. I will exemplify how and why the media has been able to propagate this new image of work forces. and why it has become such a tendency. Unintentional Messages

Work forces are non the chief mark audience of any cosmetics company. and even though some companies have skincare lines targeted at work forces. these are seldom what the male graven images end up backing. Rather. these cosmetics campaigns seek to promote adult females to buy these merchandises. by boxing them as what their graven images would wish a miss to utilize. In the Shinee advertizement for Etude House pictured above. for case. the fact that they are indicating the lip rouges at the spectator suggests that they want the spectator to utilize it. non themselves. Given that these graven images can sell anything from socks to alcohol to a peculiar trade name of poulet. inquiring them to sell cosmetics and skin care truly is non that large of a stretch. However. because of the very being of these advertisement runs. there exists a connexion between work forces and the usage of cosmetics and skin care. and this connexion does non ever connect in the same manner as the above statement. In semiologies ( Rose. 2012 ) . for illustration. a adult male keeping a lip rouge and smile can be interpreted in a few different ways. The signifer – the adult male. the lip rouge and the smiling – has no intending exterior of a peculiar context.

The signified – the construct attached to the image – is nevertheless non ever the same. because marks are polysemic. and have different readings depending on the context. While the ad having Shinee is non seeking to state that they use lipstick. they will everlastingly be linked to Etude House. a cosmetics trade name for adult females. Besides worthy of note is the fact that Shinee. Kim Hyun Joong and Song Joong Ki all endorse a really popular point of Korean make-up known as BB pick. This is perchance the exclusive point of make-up widely used by work forces in Korea. even though it is unpopular outside the state. This is partly because BB picks are a kind of ‘invisible makeup’ . responsible merely for doing person expression like they have natural flawless tegument. and non like a retarding force queen. However. it is besides because of the fact that these graven images are frequently portrayed as really utilizing these BB picks alternatively of simply promoting the spectator to purchase them. In fact. the desire for work forces holding flawless tegument with no acne may be attributed partly to all male graven images holding such tegument. Semiologically talking. work forces with flawless skin represent an ideal

Intentional Messages
Unfortunately. while it is possible that the more emasculate portraiture of work forces in decorative ads is mostly unwilled. the forced cross-dressing and public presentation of feminine dances on telecasting shows ( such as on Idol Maknae Rebellion ) is non. U-Kiss Dongho cross-dressing in Idol Maknae Rebellion

The media in this instance really intentionally set up the state of affairs that forces male graven images to dress up in female vesture to supply amusement and granary higher evaluations. The graven images. nevertheless. are most frequently really uncomfortable with making so. The image broadcast to the universe by the telecasting Stationss. nevertheless. proposes that this image of the graven images as being acceptable. even desirable to some extent. The inquiry is – who is the one making the desiring? In this instance. the media may really be gratifying to the female regard in making an image of emasculate ‘cute’ work forces. While this may non appeal to a female audience in general. it decidedly entreaties to the female fanbase that the Korean boybands have. By dressing the graven images up like dolls. they are exteriorizing them and subjecting them to the female regard. It runs in the same vena as the tendency for ‘chocolate abs’ . or the well-defined six pack acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene that some Korean graven images such as Rain possess. Basically. it is fan service.

However. this fan service will finally direct the message across that it is acceptable ( should at that place be a desire to ) for work forces to dress as adult females and still be attractive and non simply provide comedic fresh fish ( as retarding force Queenss might ) . They are stating that these work forces make beautiful adult females. and that is a good thing. In add-on. the amusement companies frequently portray specific members of each set as being really effeminate – even without dressing like a adult female. NU’EST’s Ren is an illustration of such a portraiture. He may of course look feminine. but this factor is played up by both the amusement company every bit good as the telecasting Stationss. NU’EST’s Ren

Harmonizing Cultivation Theory. the media provides a deformed worldview. and that changeless exposure to this media content will build a world that is consistent with the content. ( Kim & A ; Lowry. 2005 ) . In add-on. harmonizing to semiotics ( Rose. 2012 ) . marks and images are interpreted by the audience to hold assorted different significances. In other words. the media creates a certain image that they want to utilize. and this image finally becomes accepted as the norm by the audience. They so move on this ‘knowledge’ of world and alter their attitudes and behaviors consequently. By portraying emasculate work forces such as Ren as being popular. handsome. or even reasonably. the media is directing the message that being effeminate is acceptable and desirable. and making an ideal of work forces that is non decently grounded in world. While Ren does look rather emasculate. and some male graven images may bask executing ‘sexy’ female group dances. the media has amplified his muliebrity beyond original proportions. and portrayed it in a really positive visible radiation. It therefore sends a message to the general populace that it is good for work forces to look and act effeminately. and in fact. the more effeminately the better.

The 1s on the having terminal of that message are non merely adult females. but work forces every bit good. It tells them that looking and acting this manner is both acceptable and attractive and will do them desirable to adult females. These work forces so make up one’s mind to modify their ain visual aspects and behaviors to suit within this cultural paradigm. This is what Kim & A ; Lowry term “the mainstreaming effect” . Peoples have a inclination to presume that media – even media for the interest of amusement. is a contemplation of world as it is. This suggests that there were people who liked effeminate work forces even before they of all time appeared in the media. However. this is non ever the instance. It is possible for media to build an image of world that ne’er existed in the first topographic point.

Even if there was ne’er an indicant that there was a market for work forces who looked like adult females. by bespeaking to the populace that such a construct is desirable. Media is ever invariably either reenforcing thoughts or sabotaging them. and in this instance. the media has chosen to make and amplify an image of work forces that is contrary to other conventional ideals of male beauty. In other words. Ren is non popular because he is peculiarly fine-looking ( or reasonably in this instance ) . but because he is a adult male who looks like a adult female. And merely because the media portrays him and work forces like him as being beautiful. the construct of such has sunk into the public consciousness. They could merely as easy have perpetuated the traditional ideal of male attraction. or portrayed him as an unwanted anomalousness. and this tendency might ne’er hold taken root. Decision

The ideals of male beauty overlapping with that of female beauty is apparently counterintuitive. since evolutionary psychological science every bit good as other theories of male beauty and attraction such as the Golden Ratio and waist-hip ratio might propose that there is a definite difference between what adult females find desirable in work forces. There is therefore a definite 3rd party responsible for such an image. and that 3rd party is the media. In this instance. they did non make it because they have an implicit in political or ideological docket. but because they have a pecuniary inducement to make so. By portraying work forces in skirts and doing average-looking work forces extraordinary. the media in Korea has created a regular gold mine in broadcast medium. merchandise advertizement and exploitable boybands.


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