Title: Are television commercials still achievement scripts for women?
Journal / Publication: Psychology of Women Quarterly
Pages: 303 – 311
Yoder, Janice D.
Holmes, Jeffrey D.
Content analyses of television advertising document the ubiquity of traditional images of women, yet few studies have explored their impact. One noteworthy exception is the experiment by Geis, Brown, Jennings, and Porter (1984). These researchers found that the achievement aspirations of controls and women exposed to traditional images were lower than those of both women who viewed nontraditional replicas and men, leading to the conclusion that women’s aspirations were muted by sexist advertising. An updated extension and modification of their study with 185 college women and 96 men did not find an interaction between gender and ad exposure, suggesting some changes over time in women’s aspirations, as well as in the content and impact of commercials. Although women’s achievement scripts now appear more similar to men’s, as well as more resistant to sexist exposure, there are signs in the present data and related research that women’s aspirations are not fully impervious to sexism in the media.