Social Comparison of Less Than Ideal Images in Television Advertising: an Exploratory Study of Masculine Gender Identity

Research suggests that comparing oneself to ideal images in advertising may result in dissatisfaction, however, there is little research to support our understanding of what happens when comparison is made to less than ideal images. This paper is an exploratory study of social comparisons by male consumers of less than ideal images in television advertising, including those of cavemen, men depicted as wolves, and men humiliated in public. The study finds social comparisons were self-enhancing, but comparisons were more complex than theory has suggested. This result is a reflection of shifting social norms regarding masculine gender identity.



Citation:

Neil Alperstein (2011) ,"Social Comparison of Less Than Ideal Images in Television Advertising: an Exploratory Study of Masculine Gender Identity", in E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 9, eds. Alan Bradshaw, Chris Hackley, and Pauline Maclaran, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 341-346.

Authors

Neil Alperstein, Loyola University Maryland, USA



Volume

E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 9 | 2011



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