Dadvertising: Representations of Fatherhood in Procter & Gamble's Tide Commercials

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Abstract

In the digital age of branding when advertisements appeal to consumers' belief systems, Procter & Gamble's Tide uses ads that feature loving fathers doing the laundry. Building on masculinity studies and branding discourses, I explore representations of Tide's dads as part of a wave of dadvertising, or advertising that uses fathers to represent ideal masculinity centered on involved parenting and emotional vulnerability. The advertisements in my case study show a spectrum of performance, from dads who justify their domestic labor with appeals to hegemonic masculinity to dads who seem at ease in historical ly feminized roles. All of these examples reveal dadvertising's root in neoliberal gender politics and commodity activism, wherein evolving masculinities are personalized and commoditized into consumerist actions.

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Leader, C. F. (2019). Dadvertising: Representations of Fatherhood in Procter & Gamble’s Tide Commercials. Communication, Culture and Critique, 12(1), 72–89. https://doi.org/10.1093/ccc/tcz002

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