Copycatting: We Have No Choice?

Submitted By christinaa121m
Words: 911
Pages: 4

Copycatting: We have no choice Have you ever looked at someone and loved what they were wearing? Or maybe the way they did their hair, or the car that they were driving. Just face it, there’s always something you wish you had. Humans want to fit in, in some way, so naturally we do things to try to do so. We look at others and view the things they have or the way they act and immediately think about ourselves. When we judge things we decide whether we like it or not. Sometimes people look past the fact that they may not even like the trends they are following, but seeing others do it makes them interested. Humans are very defensive when it comes to their own individuality. Many times if people are accused of being a copycat, they claim that advertisements, commercials, and even people around them every day, have no effect on them. I would argue that people naturally copy others because of their genetic predisposition to do so, and that we are not 100% in control of our behaviors. Well-known feminist Jean Kilbourne, who is known for her work on studying the advertisement industries’ portrayal of women, provides information and examples for my argument, by mentioning how ads make us learn how important it is for women to be beautiful and thin, by enclosing us in a world where the ideal image of a woman must be this way (Kilbourne, Killing Us Softly). But what came first, how we view ideal female beauty, or the advertiser’s illustration of it? We all inherited certain characteristics of what makes a woman attractive in the first place, and it didn’t take much time for advertisers to exploit it. While viewing magazines and commercials, you can’t help but wish you looked different or had different clothes. They show your favorite actors or singers with a perfectly slim body wearing new styles. Women aren’t the only ones targeted in advertisements, although it may seem that way. Jean Kilbourne mentions how men are aimed at in advertisements as well. She makes a point about how advertisements, like the ones for Axe, effect out mindset about the way we think we should look or feel. The cover of the January issue of OK! Weekly Magazine provides additional evidence to support my thesis. The cover story is a Kim Kardashian Exclusive: HOW I LOST 15LBS, AND KEPT IT OFF! The cover of the magazine also includes a few secrets as to what will be included in the article: Kim’s meal plan, how she was still able to eat carbs, and her easy home workout plan. When people see this magazine, they are tempted to pick it up because Kim Kardashian makes it sound easy to get this ideal perfect body, and we naturally want to copy what she does. We do the things others do to eventually achieve a certain goal; for example, a slim body, shiny hair, or perfect skin. Carrie McLaren explains in Ad Nausem: A Survivor’s Guide to American Consumer Culture, that advertisers aren’t convincing people to buy certain items, they are simply suggesting ideas and associations. This creates a psychological connection to something appealing and the product being sold. In a men’s Axe body spray advertisement, they demonstrate what the effects of using this product will supposedly be. They suggest that by using Axe you will constantly be surrounded by many attractive and eager women. To