Modernism and Gender in Ads from Hebrew Magazines of Mandatory Palestine
Shahar Marnin-Distelfeld, PhD

This article examines representations of the home-maker and mother in advertisements from dailies, women magazines, and manuals of pre-state Israel. It is based on about 150 ads which were divided into topicoriented groups and then analyzed using content analysis and semiotic models. The ads were investigated as cultural texts reflecting ideologies, concepts, and norms of its creators as well as of the audience they were aimed at. The findings show four main ideologies embodied in the ads: the ideology of nationalism, the ideology of domesticity, that of Modernism and the ideology of science. In this article, the last two ideologies are presented, followed by analyzed examples of home-makers and mothers’ representations in relation to domestic chores and to family members in the house. Throughout all ideologies, an ambivalent image of the woman is portrayed: a woman exclusively in charge of the household jobs, albeit lacking authority and power. We notice a repetitive representation of a mother responsible for the health of her children, who is asked to rely on an expert’s advice, but not on her own intuition and experience.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijgws.v4n1a2