Women in Armenian Advertisements



In today’s world, the role of advertising, whether online advertisements or advertisements broadcasted on TV or on the radio can reflect the way a society works. It is the reflection of the perception of roles in a specific community, from gender to sexual identity, even the gap between social classes. The language and the kind of promotions shown in those kinds of ads can familiarize a certain concept or way of living through shedding the lights on how for example, women should clean the house, well because usually cleaning brands only target women, or a food brand, where most of the time they use a [old] woman. 

The Representation of Women in Armenian Advertisements

Advertisements can depict a way a society functions, it can reinforce an idea or give a wrong impression towards a certain topic, and since advertisements are targeted towards everyone, it can give the wrong idea especially when not everyone is literate or educated and this fact can greatly affect a society. I am writing on how women are represented in Armenian advertisements because I want to find out the challenge’s women face in the Armenian community since corrupted patriarchal leaders took women’s voices.

Sexist Approach

Throughout the years and especially before the velvet revolution, Armenia and the Armenian people weren’t fair towards women. According to the United Nations of Armenia, women earn a wage 66% less than men’s, moreover women also face a lot of wrong stereotypes which leads to women not having enough legal rights to protect them, which leads to more inequality in the Armenian society (as of 2017). Furthermore, the lack of women representation in governments before the revolution led to more injustice towards millions of females who could have been the backbone of Armenia.

Stereotypes in Armenian Advertisements

Advertisements can make or break a certain concept, in some Armenian ads, women are depicted as bad drivers. Moreover, the Armenian media, whether it was a series on TV or an ad, women in the media are depicted as beautiful creatures with a very attractive shape leaving behind the real and “normal” image of “normal” everyday women. In addition, the presentation of Armenian women in the mass media gives little to no help towards overcoming gender stereotypes. The absence of advertisements targeting domestic violence, rape and gender discrimination gives Armenian men a solid ground to keep on treating women as sexual objects because of the lack of campaigns  towards these issues. For example , in a talk show (supposed to talk about gender equality) called Yerevann e Fossum, they said that the main role of women is to give birth and take care of the household which gives men a reason to treat their wives, sisters, girlfriends in a very bad and patriarchal way since the media is giving them the reason to be more masculine. According to a survey conducted by Yerevan State University Center for Gender and Leadership Studies (Gender Barometer Armenia ) as per the respondents, the main cause of gender inequality, 55% focused on the lack of awareness in the society about women’s issues. Unsurprisingly, this opinion is more spread among women (60%) than men (44%). Moreover, men are naturally stronger and more intelligent than women (at least from the male point of view). In addition, 20% of respondents believe that the gap between gender has a religious foundation. 

Brighter Future

After the revolution that wiped the Armenian norms in 2018,  Armenian women started to have a higher voice, many women now have leadership roles, many women are now speaking up towards the injustice they are facing. The power and resilience of Armenian wasn’t only present in protests, but in war too, during the recent Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, dozens of Armenian women registered in the army recruitment and actually went on and fought, this goes to show that Armenian women aren’t like the way they are represented in advertisements, their place is not in the kitchen and no they are not bad drivers or just sexual objects, they are the future of the Republic Of Armenia.

In brief, advertisements are the real reflection of a certain society or country and all around the world, women are still portrayed as objects rather than human beings, specifically in Armenia where major women rights and women are still portrayed as birth machines and caregivers rather than human beings with hopes and dreams.