AbstractBy Iffah Fikzia13020115120003Black African-American still consider asa inferior nation. Although, black community have been free from the period ofslavery, they are still face bad treatment, such as racism. This is can beproven from the advertisement of “Dove Body Lotion” that the dark woman turninto white woman after using this product. Therefore, the aim of this paper isto to develop an understandingor to provide knowledge regarding of the racism issue that still exist inAmerican society and the reason why racism is difficult to erase in America.When analyzing this paper, the method of collecting data and analysis that theauthor use are textual and contextual analysis.
Meanwhile, the author usesociological theory in order to create deep analysis about racism. As a result,racism is still difficult to erase in America since the idea of black people asan inferior nation have been growing over time as a belief of American history.Keywords: Black people, White people, Racism,Sociologica theory, Blackness. I. IntroductionNowadays, the number of ads produced by varioustrademarks displays the message that being white is better than being black.From the product advertisement, take an example from beaty brands.
Body lotionshows that the transformation people is getting white, shining, and free fromblack spots. Indeed, an advert does not express anything through the word, butfrom the symbol of any advertisement, itcan change the people mind that the meaning of the beauty, good people, strongpeople or anything which is related to something good are come from to thewhite symbol. And sometimes the way they present the advertisements make a conclusionthat racism and discrimination to black people or African-America communitystill exist in the environment of American society and other countries.Since the appearance of racism in black community ofAfrican-American that still endure eventhough that slavery America isprohibited after the declaration of Human Right in 1948 black people in Americastill get bad treatment such as, discrimination, racism, and segregation thatcome from white people. Therefeore, I want to discuss this issue from one ofthe advertisements “Dove Body Lotion” that make assumption about being a blackis not good enough than being a white. The aim to analyze this topic is to to develop an understanding or to provide knowledgeregarding of the racism issue that still exist in American society and thereason why racism is difficult to erase in America. At the same time, theadvantage of the study is theoretical advantage that is expected to enrich theinsight on racism issues that are still ingrained in the American community throughthe media.
II. Director”Dove BodyLotion” that was posted on the US Facebook site on February 2017. The durationof this video only about three seconds. Actually, in spite ofthis advertisement has removed from the Dove official facebook site, it went viral on social media and youtube after NaomiLeann Blake, an make up artist and model, posted them to her facebook page. Thus, on this clip, this advert shows a black woman removing her brown shirt toreveal a white woman that implying after using this body lotion product. It canbe clear that black woman turning into white woman and it seems more beautifulskin than black woman.
III. Theory and MethodInthis paper, the method of collecting data and analysis that I use is textualand contextual analysis. The definition of textual anaysis according to Frey’sbook in “An Introduction to Research Methods” (1999) states that the textualanalysis method is using to describe and interpret the characteristics of arecord or visual message and the purpose is to represent the content of themessages. In close viewing, one of the element that I would like to discuss iscinematic elements. After reading on Bordwell and Thompson’s book entitled”Film Art an Introduction Eighth Edition” (2008:190) about cinematography thatone of cinematic elements, it can be concluded that the frame of positions,called angle, and camera distance are some terms in cinematography. Angle isdivided into three general categories.
They are the straight-on angle that isthe most common angel in order the viewer can see in equal with the object, thehigh angle which the position is looking down on the action, and the last isthe low angle that looking up at the frame positions. Move to the definition ofcamera distance according to “Film Art an Introduction Eighth Edition”(2008:191) is the size framing images from movie maker. It can be divided intoseven shots. They are extreme long shot; the human figure is barely visible,long shot; figures are more leading,but the background still dominates, mediumlong shot when figures shots from about the knees up, medium shot frames thehuman body from waist up, medium close-up that figures shot from the chest up,close up that is showing only the head; hands; feet; or small object. And thelast is the extreme close-up which out a portion of the face or aggrandize anobject. Besidestextual method, I also look for the meaning of contextual method.
According toHestetun in journal of American Studies in Scandinavia, volume 25, entitled”Text, Contex, and Culture in Literary Studies” in 1993 states that the focusof contextual is to get the social dimensions or issues as gender, race,ethnicity, and class in relation to cultural product. Moreover, contextual tryto establish the relationship between individual text, a historical culturalcontext, and system of power. They are tending to apply strategies odideological critique in order to examine the historical, social, cultural, andpolitical range of literature.Thus,through the contextual method, the theory that I use is sociological in racism.According to Clair and Denis in Scholar Harvard article “Sociology of Racism”argue that it is the study of the relationship between racism, racial discrimination,and racial inequality.
Thus, in sociological theory, I also mention racism and blacknessconcept that can be used to get more data analyze. According to the book “Introduction to Sociology” (2013) chapter 11 page 232 racism is a stronger type of prejudice that are used tomake a belief that one racial category is somehow superior or inferior toothers, and a set of practices used by a racial majority to damage a racialminority. Blackness concept according to theHrabovsky’sarticle “The Concept Blackness in Theories of Race” (2003) statesthat is concerning lower status for black skin. Therefore, with the textual andcontextual method, and using racism and colorism theory, it can be used as abenchmark in analyzing the data. IV. Result and DiscussionA. TextualAnalysisIndiscussing the video advertisement Dove body lotion using the method of textualanalysis with close viewing, the type of frame positions or angle on this videoadvertisement is the straight-on angle. Picture 1 Source:https://www.
youtube.com/watch?v=GJssvw1LQbITherefore, the camera angel is alignedwith the object in order the viewer can see in equal with the figure. Regardingof camera distance, this advertisement can be categorized into medium shotsince the figure shots from the waist up. Picture 2Source:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJssvw1LQbI B.
ContextualAnalysisThenext aspect that I will discuss is about why racism still exist in Americasociety in the context of sociology theory. Again, racism is the idea used tomake right the belief that one group is superior or inferior and better thanother races. When discussing about racism in America society, we need tolooking back into 17th century. As we know that racist began during the periodof slavery and according to the history slavery in America, slavery beganpracticed in the 17th and 18th centuries, and slaves themselves helped buildthe economic foundations of the new nation. Black people are believed to beinferior nation and the idea of white people is superior and better than blacksso that they were treated horribly and no one respect to them when being asslave. Moreover, they worked all day, all times, and taking all of theirmasters ask for. After that, in the 19th century,the end of slavery officiallyabolished in the late of 1865 after the 13th amendment adopted. Despiteat the time blacks officially free from slavery, still many whites, especiallySouth people, they feel unhappy when that people who they once enslaved are nowon an equal area with them as they held public office and pursued legislativechanges for equal with white people.
Thus, they were again confronted withdiscriminatory and racist behavior in varied kinds in the life aspects, forinstance “Jim Crow” laws. To make sure that blacks is still in the backside andto keep separate them from whites, in the South Jim Craw laws were establishedbeginning in the late 19th century. This laws had an impact on them, such asthey could not use the same public facilities as whites, could not go to thesame school, restaurant, cafe, and even they had no voting rights. Ashas been described from the previous paragraphs about racism that black peopleface, today people of color still face racism. In this modern era, racism bring into being all kind of refined ways.Consequently, it makes people difficult to recognize whether an action can becategorized as racism or not.
Through the idea advertisement of “Dove BodyLotion”, we can see clearly that racism idea still exist even in the media.Picture 3 Picture 4 Picture 5Thethree images from the picture 3, 4, and 5 show people from different race as ifin the picture 3 from black African-American, picture 4 from white Americawoman, and the last from Asian in the picture 5. Maybe some of the people arguethat this video advertisement is not racist advertisement since the producer ofthis ad only represent the beauty of diversity without considering anycondition of ethnicity. If it not, then what the purpose is when black womanwear a dark shirt, and on the other sides the woman in picture 4 and 5 getdressed light-colored clothes or at least not dark as black woman wear it. AsI said before, this is racist manifested in refined ways. If it’s not racismthen it should be question why the black woman did not get dressedlight-colored shirt that equal with two of rest.
Seeing that, the viewer bybeing inderect, belief that the beauty or good looking standard is when youhave white colored skin. Moreover, this advertisement act on behalf of thegeneral society belief the dark colored skin is not good looking enough sincemany product holding competitions that some of their product can bleaching theskin. With this idea of being white colored skin is more valuable than beingdark colored skin, indirect it can be categorized as being racist. Since a longtime ago, being racist have been already to run in people or white Americansociety blood. I got some of theresearch data from the website of “Pew Research Center Social & DemographicTrends” issued on June 27, 2016 among 3.769 participants adult that including1.799 whites and 1.004 blacks, and 654 Hispanics.
This survey focuses on thedifferences between blacks and whites and on treatment of black people in theAmerica today. The survey finds that blacks still feel society around themespecially white people still being racist to them. Blacks feel that they stillhave lower quality school than whites in 75% and other sides whites think thatlower quality school of black in 53%, lack of jobs in 65% from blacks, 46% ofwhite Americans telling race relations are generally good and 45% saying theyare generally bad. Different with blacks, they say race relations are bad in61% rather than good in 34%.
Moreover, 66% of Blacks say that they are treatedless fairly than whites in dealing with the police and blacks more difficultthan whites when applying for a loan than whites in 66%. Therefore, this can beproven that black people from the time of slavery until now in the modern erastill face racism. Then,it should be question for some of the people who think about what makes blacksstill get racism and why it is very difficult to erase of being racist towardblack people in America society. This issue can be clear when we see inblackness concept.
Blackness concept accoding to Hrabovsky on the article “TheConcept of Blackness in Theories of Race” claims that black skin is consideredas damned and this is one of the reason why black people be as slaves. Theconcept of black itself, we have already heard that some of the poets certainlyrepresent blackness as death, negation, and afterlife. In her article, she alsomention that the differences between black and white already show up inPythagoreans theory by Diogenes Laertius saying that Pythagoreans alreadyregarded the white color represent a good nature and black represent a bad one.Moreover, if we look at from the Greek meaning of black skin is a result ofweather conditions and become the fierce heat of the sun and also this term isdescribing a negative sign, such as illness. In the scope of Christianityreligion, purity is related with light and impurity with darkness.
Throughthe description of blackness concept, it can be deduced from this videoadvertisement of “Dove Body Lotion” that black race still get racism becausethe term of black as damned thing is already conceptualized in a long time ago.The black woman in that video reveal her dark shirt and turn into white woman.It clear that the advertisement about body lotion give the message that darkrepresent as impurity and become white as represent purity and good nature whenpeople using this product. Therefore, black race still considered as somethinginferior than anything in the historical of slavery and it is difficult toerase the idea of black people as inferior. V. ConclusionIn conclusion, through the advertisement of “Dove BodyLotion” in America racism still exist, but not as fierce when the period ofslavery or Jim Crow laws. Racist in this modern era manifestedin refined ways, such as in the advertisement that difficult to recognize asracism. Thus, it is difficult to erase all of the idea of black people as an inferiornation and not as good as white people since the definiton of black itself are consideredthe worse thing is come from in a long time ago as part of American history.
Inevaluation, this paper that talking about the racism that still exists amongblacks will be better if using more resources. As the public thinks itselfabout the black people that can be proven whether the ads greatly affect themindset of the community that being racist against black people. Other data canalso be obtained by using questionnaires to support the arguments. ReferencesBrodwell,David, and Kristin Thompson. Film Art anIntroduction 8th Edition.
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