Teenagers, Researchers and Benetton
Match Interpretations of your Benetton Advertising campaign Picture
Inside the spring of 1997, four Benetton adverts were put into front of Finnish applicants for the matriculation evaluation. One described a deshalb and a priest the kiss, another showcased a black wolf and a light lamb, a third one was a picture of multi-coloured condoms lined up in straight rows, and a fourth pictured a " family of the future”, two adults using a child in the middle them covered in a green blanket. 1 The pictures had been a part of that year's examination in the Finnish language like a mother tongue in which the young people had been asked to create an article with a subject of their own based on the material allocated to them 2 . This issue was thirstily seized upon by the learners. Thousands of works were drafted, and the learners added their particular opinions towards the Benetton controversy that has churned for years in the public world. However , their particular interpretations may be assessed just by their own teacher plus the matriculation evaluation board – that is, right up until this article was written. Probably Benetton as being a phenomenon continues to be too trendy for sociologists or experts in the field of interaction studies to get the nerve to show an interest inside the subject. Searching through the sources of social sciences (September 1998) ends in only a few texts that manage Benetton. The most central of these are " Dream Utopias, Nightmare Realities” (1993) by simply Les As well as Vibeke Quaade, " Consuming Social Change” (1994) by Henry A. Giroux, and " Pictures of Planetary Danger” (1994) by Eileen Shapiro. Sociologist Pasi Falk has also written about Benetton. His article " The Benetton-Toscani Effect: Screening the Limits of Conventional Advertising” was published in 1997. In Division of Writing and Mass Communication, School of Tampere, FIN-33014 University of Tampere, [email protected] fi
the field of connection studies, Serra A. Tinic's " United Colors and United Meanings: Benetton plus the Commodification of Social Issues” that was published in the Journal of Communication in 1997 sticks out. There are 3 things which can be common to most of these texts. First of all, they make an attempt to critically measure the meaning regarding Benetton pictures and/or join it within other tradition: advertisement and pictorial manifestation of competition or globalisation. Another quality, the primary one particular where here is info concerned, is usually that the articles rely on so-called textual interpretations. In such a case, the investigator interprets the meanings from the Benetton advertising campaigns and promotions in the light of his/her own assumptive knowledge, in a historically limited cultural condition which can be known as scientific task. The third common feature spring suspensions from the reality not one of these articles considercarefully what the above-mentioned factor probably means in regards to the understanding. The much-debated reflexivity for that reason does not seem to reach the field of scientific job, in so far as reflexivity is realized as self-reflexivity; namely, concern of the reasons and discursive state of the own understanding. In this article, I actually only handle one query: what is the relationship of the researcher's interpretation to the interpretations from the pictures by young people? It is significant to find hope for00 this query, because in neuro-scientific social scientifically-oriented photography study, little research is conducted around the reception of the image. In Finland, an exception is Pauliina Arva's job Pictures and Images of Health Education (1991), in which the lady illuminates the reception of health education. If the subject is viewed from the wider horizon of communications analysis, the reception of different media texts was already long researched. However ,
to my personal knowledge even in this area simply no comparative condition has been build between specialist and layman interpretations of the identical media...
References: Aarva, Pauliina (1991) Terveysvalistuksen kuvia ja mielikuvia. (Pictures and Images of Health Education) Acta Universitatis Tamperensis. Servir A; volume. 328. Tampere: University of Tampere. Back again, Les and Quaade, Vibeke (1993) Dream Utopias, Headache Realities. Imagining Race and Culture inside the World of Benetton Advertising. Third Text 22(1993), 65-80. Butler, Judith (1990) Gender Problems. Feminism as well as the Subversion of Identity. Ny: Routledge. Retainer, Judith (1993) Bodies That Matter. On the Discursive Limitations of " Sex”. New York: Routledge. Devor, Holly (1989) Gender Blending together. Confronting the Limits of Mix and match. Bloomington (Ind. ): Indianapolis University Press. Falk, Pasi (1997) The Benetton-Toscani Impact: Testing the Limits of Conventional Advertising. In Mica Nava, Andrew Blake, Iain MacRury and Barry Richards (eds. ) Purchase This Book. Studies in Marketing and Ingestion. London: Routledge, pp. 64-83. Giroux, Henri A. (1994) Consuming Social Change: The United Colours of Benetton. In Henri A. Giroux: Disturbing Joys. New York: Routledge. pp. 5-24. Hall, Stuart (ed. ) (1997) Manifestation: Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices. London, uk: Sage. Shapiro, Michael (1996) Images of Planetary Danger – Luciano Benetton's Cooperative Fantasy. In Tuija Parvikko and Jukka Kanerva (eds. ) Exploring the Chronospace of Images. Jyväskylä: University of Jyväskylä, pp. 9-33. Tinic, Serra A. (1997) Combined Colors and United Connotations: Benetton as well as the Commodification of Social Problems. Journal of Communication 47(1997): 3, pp. 3-25.
Translation: Aijaleena Ahonen and Kris Clarke
Published earlier in Tiedotustutkimus 23(2000)2: pp. 20-35. 96