Ethnic Chinese Representations in Indonesian Advertising

Angeline Nariswari, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA
Xin Zhao, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA
This paper explores the representation of ethnic Chinese in Indonesian advertising. Having experienced prolonged discrimination, the Chinese minority are slowly regaining their rights in a more democratic nation. Through a semiotic approach, we examine how advertising represents ethnic Chinese in a context in which prejudice and negative sentiment still permeate. We find that Indonesian ads facilitate the appearance of stereotypical characters, forms of gender reversal, and arbitrary reinterpretation of Chinese culture. Advertising constitutes a safe valve for laughter and self-humiliation, serving as a temporary mechanism to release social tension.
[ to cite ]:
Angeline Nariswari and Xin Zhao (2010) ,"Ethnic Chinese Representations in Indonesian Advertising", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 868-870 .