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Ethnicity and race – the best social campaigns

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Today very formal and long post about one of the topics I’m especially interested in – social campaigns. So well – I hope nobody will die from boredom reading it. I wrote 1 year ago a long essay about this topic for one of my subjects, so it may be a little bit more serious then just my usual posts here, but I hope you’d like it! Let’s begin.

Topics that focus on identities are especially interested if it comes to their representation in commercials. Social commercials showing identities of immigrants and race are trying to create more awareness of the life of an immigrant and of the problems of racism as well.

There is often a confusion  between identity and culture. Identity is used both with the preservation of traditions and customs. This is problematic because behaving in ways that correspond to an ethnic patterns  and participation in a ethnic contexts can be instrumental and not necessarily is has to be an expressive of identity.[1]

The same problem appears in the commercials – they try to show “identity” of an immigrant or “race identity”, but usually it could be very instrumental. We can very often found in commercials many different over-simplifications, like for example:

– racial identity reduced only to skin colour
– nationalism reduced to patriotism

 

Examples and issues             

 

1.                  Posters –

Let me start by showing some of the best posters – these are mainly from UK and Scotland

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2.      “Cheerios” commercial presenting inter-racial family

 

Now I would like to focus on one commercial, but  also show the reaction to a commercial.

 Some time ago there was a case of racist backlash against an advertising of the company’s featuring an interracial family in United States (commercial available to see here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYofm5d5Xdw )  . This commercial includes a white mother, black father and biracial child. It received so many hateful comments from racists worried that “Cheerios” highlighted a mixed-race family that company shut down the comments section on the commercial’s Web page.[2]

The “Cheerios” commercial is not the first to present a black-white interracial couple. “Blockbuster” commercial featured a white mom, black dad and biracial son and four years ago, a “Philadelphia Cream Cheese” commercial featured a black man and white woman eating a breakfast in bed. Given that numbers of families that contain interracial couples grown to 28 percent from 2000 to 2010, it’s a smart marketing for companies to present mixed-race couples in commercials. However, the reactions of the public – as we may observe – can be very negative and aggressive. Of course, the company stands by this commercial and defends the idea – but it a  great example why there should be more commercials like this. It supposed to bring awareness to the people and try to decrease racism problem – which is of course – a long way to go still.

3.      Benetton commercials

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 How can I not talk about the most known brand for social campaigns activity? That’s right, I can’t . Ladies and gentleman – well-known to all of you – Benetton.

“We did not create our advertisements in order to provoke, but to make people talk, to develop citizen consciousness

Luciano Benetton

Benetton is a global fashion brand, which was founded in Treviso, Italy. Benetton has a network of over 6,500 stores in 120 countries.  Since the 1980s this company has gained a reputation for shock-advertising that has a lot of controversy and that is stimulating debates. In the 1980s, world-renowned photographer Olivero Toscani created for Benetton the first of his multiracial campaigns with the “United Colors of Benetton” . The basic Luciano Benetton thought was:

 

I am not here to sell pullovers, but to promote an image

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Benetton asks:

 

 “Can marketing and the enormous power of advertising budgets be used to establish a dialogue with consumers that focuses on something other than a company’s products? Where was it written that advertising could only portray the absence of conflict and pain?’[3]

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With this policy Benetton created a lot of advertisements connected to race and ethnic issues Most of this commercials are trying to show the identity of a single individual.

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4. Many example on social actions presented on blogs

 

            Nowadays we have many different ways of communication – especially through internet. So another way to make a positive public action that brought up awareness about race or multiculturalism is to try to use a personal blog for that. We have an excellent example of this case. In this action people were asked to touch hair of afro-american women.

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Not only is this an excellent tactic to start dialogue around this culturally, somewhat taboo fascination with ethnic hair, but it has also served as an experiential marketing strategy to build exposure for the Un’Ruly blog. As a result of the exhibit, the blog has been featured on websites for The Huffington Post, AOL, Jezebel, Refinery29 and more

5. This is one commercial that I specially liked, its not so much about race, but about stereotypes – but it’s a topic so much connected to the others I present.

From Belgium –

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=RS3iB47nQ6E

Identity connected with race and ethnicity is an excellent topic in commercials, because its not only a good strategic movement, but also a good case to bring out awareness and decrease racism. This topic for sure will pursue his path in a commercial world, because it is still a lot to talk about and its still a lot to show. The diversity of nowadays world – full of people moving from place to place – it a great inspiration to make advertisements, that make us more unite and more understanding of one another.

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[1]Athias Flora, Transnational mobilities, migration research and intersectionality. Towards a translocational frame [in:] Nordic journal of Migration Research

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How Nobel peace prize nominations and decisions continue to make me a headache – Putin vs. Malala

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Some time ago (pretty long time – as I feel now) Nobel Prize laureates were announced.I always follow these announcements, but the two categories I’m most interested in are Peace Prize and Literature Prize.

The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to 125 Nobel Laureates since 1901. We have here legends like Mother Teresa, Nelson Mendela or Martin Luther King Jr.. But we have also a lot of controversy in a field. We had Barack Obama for a start and this year we had Vladimir Putin. This cases and few more make me think that The Norwegian Nobel Committee is just a group of licking-asses idiots. Of course they have nothing to do with Putin’s nominations, but some of their decisions are just unthinkable.

A Russian advocacy group claims to have nominated Putin for the peace prize because he “actively promotes settlement of all conflicts arising on the planet.” If he promotes settlement of any conflict what-so-ever – than I’m a freaking Santa and I’m just preparing gifts right now, because – let’s face it – December is coming. 

Some comments i found and i think they are quite accurate:

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It’s not I don’t like the guy – I hate the guy. Anyone who has a bit of idea of reality and has travelled maybe to Russia or Ukraine, or at least – has friends from that region – maybe share the feelings I have. What about separatists in Chechnya or the war in Georgia or  homosexual ridiculous laws that Putin signed?

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Well, lets try to focused on good things. Other nominees this year that obviously didn’t get the prize, but at least the world heard about them and their stories, which is also really important. If you don’t know the story of Malala and others – you have to repair your mistake very quickly.

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Nicholas Kristof wrote a perfect summary of this year decision on his facebook and I would like to end with this as a summary. Go individuals! :

So the Nobel Peace Prize goes to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. A great organization doing great work in places like Syria–but, still, a bureaucracy. Can’t help feeling a bit of a letdown that it didn’t go to an amazing individual like Malala, Dr. Mukwege or Edna Adan.”

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unforgettable TED speeches – Tony Robbins

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Yes, I’m talking about this one speech long time ago titled “Why we do what we do”, the one with on-stage interaction with Al Gore. Tony Robbins as many of you know is a life coach and expert in leadership psychology, the owner of one of the world’s most famous smiles. Some people don’t like his physicality, but I find it really pleasant, I don’t know why.

Of course here is the link to the famous TED talk:

http://www.ted.com/talks/tony_robbins_asks_why_we_do_what_we_do.html?quote=139

So – What’s make us adore or hate Tony Robbins?

There are a few things he does. First of all he has this very direct — even confrontational – approach, and not everybody like it. He assume a lot of things and he is juggling his audience how he wants.

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But focusing on this particular speech he gave – I don’t buy everything he says there, and in some parts rational structure of the content is not convincing enough. He is using pathos a lot with the audience and sometimes it’s a bit annoying. But other than that – I really like his stage presence and the way he was delivering. If somebody of you didn’t have a chance to see it before – I really recommend it – because this is how looks a really good speech/presentation. Maybe is not so much about the content in some places, but – the content is there, and I will prove it with some quotes and points he made:

1) “and then you meet people that have been through ultimate pain(…) not always, but often, they become some of the people that contribute the most to society”

(I have so many examples of that sentence that its hard even to count them.)

 

2) “decision is the ultimate power

 

3) “if we get the right emotion, we can get ourselves to do anything, we can get through it. If you are creative enough, playful enough, fun enough, can you get through to anybody?”

 

This three sentences are the most valuable for me, because I agree with all of them. Tony basically gives a massage that the most important things for us is having the ability to grow and to contribute beyond ourselves. It’s really worth watching, so go on and do it! I’m leaving you with the two most known quotes from this speech, Enjoy!

Connection and love: … We all want it. Most people settle for connection because love’s too scary.”

 “The history of our world is these decisions. When a woman stands up and says, ‘No, I won’t go to the back of the bus,’ she didn’t just affect her life. That decision shaped our culture.”

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The most romantic endings and not only

Some people think that’s its tacky, this part of the cinema that we bravely called romantic comedies. But the part of this gender we can find in the ocean of other not so romantic movies. What is really “the romantic” factor? Usually sth not realistic, happening between two people, and usually it involves some things from this list:

–          a great “I love you” said in a lots of ways

–          happy ending with flowers, flying cats, tears and clapping dinosaurs

–          a monumental gesture

–          a change happen to one person, or a struggle

–          of course very pathetic words, slow motion

–          and a golden quote that we can add to other golden quotes

Don’t get me wrong, im not being cynical at all. I love this kind of camp, I really do, cause every single thing has a place in a wide storage that cinema really is. And its not fair to laugh at this specific gender, cause at the end of the day, when we r tired and our head can’t stand the reality any more – that’s the best medicine for a lot of things. So let’s not judge, just embrace. Here r some of the best scenes in my opinion, when it comes to “romantic” factor:

You’ve got mail

 

The last scene

 

And sth different hahaha – ladies and gentleman – Moonrise Kingdom!

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Of course this deserves two really great scenes:

Eternal sunshine….

Garden State:

Pretty women:

Dirty Dancing:

Nothing Hill:

Serendipity:

He’s just not that into you:

Pride and prejudice:

And my favorite one! :

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Girls vs Girls

tumblr_mgdnc211Qh1qzquluo1_500Let’s combine sth old and sth new. From TV. What pops throw my mind – Gilmore Girls and Girls. What can I say – two rather girly shows, but both have qualities that put other shows far far (like really far) away.

In Gilmore Girls we have mother-daughter connection, great monologues – very sharp, smart, with lots of cultural inter-connections. And this kind of warmth, happiness about so many little things like coffee, snow, movies or lunch 🙂 I don’t have enough time to explain why Gilmore Girls are fabulous.

In Girls we just have a group of twenty-something girls living in New York. Sounds so close to “Sex and the City”, but its not at all. We have cynicism, everything is more grey, more down-to-earth and because of that – more dirty and real 🙂

Here r some of the nice quotes from both series, enjoy!

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Oh, just give me a hug already :)

tumblr_meud14uEwH1rjqs8do1_500Happiness is an unexpected hug.

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I have a present for you, but I need to borrow your arms for wrapping paper.  ~Author Unknown

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Today the topic is light, funny and very warm. Yes, we r talking about hugs. How hugs can help us become more happy every day? Well, the answer to a question : how our bodies respond to love and affection is a hormone called oxytocin. Most of our oxytocin is made in the area of the brain called the hypothalamus. Some of that is released into our bloodstream, but much of its effect is thought to reside in the brain.

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I love hugging.  I wish I was an octopus, so I could hug ten people at a time.  ~Drew Barrymore

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Oxytocin makes us feel good when we are close to family and other loved ones, including pets. It does this by acting through what scientists call the dopamine reward system. Dopamine is a brain chemical that plays a crucial part in how we perceive pleasure.

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No matter how hard you hug your money, it never hugs back.  ~Quoted in P.S. I Love You, compiled by H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

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Oxytocin does more than make us feel good. What else can it do?

-lower the levels of stress hormones in the body

-reduce blood pressure

-improve mood and increase tolerance for pain

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Have you hugged yourself today?

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So – human brain naturally produces oxytocin during few things actually: breast-feeding, orgasm, hugs, snuggling, holding hands, partner dance, massage, bodywork, and prayer.

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Yes, hugs as well. At least 8 hugs per day it’s a medicine to feel a lot happier. After only 20 seconds of hugging someone, one can achieve a spike in oxytocin levels, as well as a decrease in blood pressure, heart rate, and cortisol levels. So do yourself a favor—go hug someone 🙂

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Everybody needs a hug.  It changes your metabolism.  ~Leo Buscaglia