Perspectives on Race

A Discussion about Events Concerning Race

Aunt Jemima’s New Makeover

with one comment

In the 21st century we are given a plethora of options to enhance our beauty, natural or not. But it is not just in the real world that we see such transformations taking place. In an article I read for my advertising class, many individuals voiced their opinion on the new face and transformation of the much loved American icon. Supposedly, in an attempt to make the face of Aunt Jemima endorsed products more appealing, the company that produces these marketableitems revamped her whole appearance.

“They discarded the bandanna, subtracted a few pounds, and gave her a new makeup job. Adorned with a pretty lace collar, a Betty Crocker hairdo and small, feminine pearl earrings, she now looks like the “after” photo in a magazine makeover.”

At first I thought that changing such a popular figure would lead to negative comments; however, this article showed positive light on this situation. This now “up-to-date” version has adopted characteristics more relatable  to figures that are currently portrayed in the media. And why shouldn’t she get a little dolled up? There are very few female, black icons in the American society. Aunt Jemima has been around now for over 100years. Aunt Jemima, being a black female, does not have to stick to the stereotypical model of black women back in her initial phase of use. Even though I found this article entertaining and almost humorous, I can fully understand the positive opinions being shed on this issue. One small step for Aunt Jemima, one giant leap for syrup and mankind.

http://www.medialit.org/reading_room/article449.html

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Written by amims1

September 10, 2009 at 11:05 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. I really think that this article was interesting. I actually thought about the change as both good and bad. Initially, I thought that it was more so offensive to alter Aunt Jemima’s “stereotypical model of a black woman” look, especially that the company finally came around to do it after so long (over 100 years)?Questions crossed my mind: Is making Aunt Jemima slimmer and giving her good “Betty Crocker” styled hair, a gesture of kindness? an act of modernization? Or is it to please the audience with that “ideal” image? However, thinking about it in a better light, this change could be the symbol of acceptance of black women as true americans, since feminine pearl earrings, Betty Crocker hairdos and pretty laced collars are associated with classic American white women icons.

    aunanan7

    September 11, 2009 at 2:51 am


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