This study was designed to examine the portrayal of men and women in a sample of 370 Spanish television commercials. The general objective was to compare and contrast the plurality and similarities between men and women as regards both gender role portrayals and sexism levels and also product stereotyping as the association of certain kinds of products with gender. In addition, we examined the type of social relationship held by the main actor/actress in the commercial. Applying content analysis methodology, the results highlight a feminine culture and a social reality moving steadily toward gender equality and complementariness between genders, albeit still within the framework of the traditional family model, which characterizes women as homemakers and mothers.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
We’re sorry, something doesn't seem to be working properly.
Please try refreshing the page. If that doesn't work, please contact support so we can address the problem.
AIMC (2001). Estudio general de medios 2000 [Study on media audiences]. Madrid: AIMC.
Artz, N., Munger, J., & Purdy, W. (1999). Gender issues in advertising language. Women in Language, 24, 20–26.
Bartsch, R. A., Burnett, T., Diller, T., & Rankin-Williams, E. (2000). Gender representation in television commercials: Updating an update. Sex Roles, 43, 735–743.
Beetles, A., & Harris, L. C. (2005). Consumer attitudes towards female nudity in advertising: An empirical study. Marketing Theory, 5, 397–432.
Brett, D., & Cantor, J. (1988). The portrayal of men and women in U.S. television commercials: A recent content analysis and trends over 15 years. Sex Roles, 18, 595–609.
Caballero, M., & Solomon, P. J. (1984). A longitudinal view of women’s role portrayal in television advertising. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 12, 93–108.
Carrasco, C., & Mayordomo, M. (1999). Tiempos, trabajos y organización social: Reflexiones en torno al mercado laboral femenino. In C. Carrasco (Ed.) Mujeres y economía. Nuevas perspectivas para viejos y nuevos problemas, pp. 125–171. [Women and Economics. New perspectives for old and new problems]. Barcelona: Icaria-Antrazyt.
Carrasco, C., & Recio, A. (2001). Time, work and gender in Spain. Time & Society, 10, 277–301.
Courtney, A., & Whipple, T. (1974). Women in TV commercials. Journal of Communication, 24, 110–118.
Courtney, A., & Whipple, T. (1983). Sex stereotyping in advertising. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books.
Dominick, J. R., & Rauch, G. E. (1972). The image of women in network TV commercials. Journal of Broadcasting, 16, 259–265.
Elliott, R., Eccles, S., & Hodgson, M. (1993). Re-coding gender representation: Women, cleaning products, and advertising’s “new man”. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 10, 311–324.
Ferguson, J., Kreshel, P., & Tinkham, S. (1990). In the pages of Ms.: Sex role portrayals of women in advertising. Journal of Advertising, 19, 40–51.
Ford, J., Kramer, P., Honeycutt Jr, E., & Casey, S. (1998). Gender role portrayals in Japanese advertising: A magazine content analysis. Journal of Advertising, 27, 113–125.
Ford, J. B., & Latour, M. S. (1996). Contemporary female perspectives of female role portrayals in advertising. Journal of Current Issues and Research in Advertising, 18, 81–85.
Fullerton, J. (2000). Images in post soviet advertising: An analysis of gender portrayal in Uzbekistan television commercials. In M. A. Shaver (Ed.), Proceedings of the Conference of the American Academy of Advertising, USA, 126–135.
Furnham, A., Babitzkow, M., & Uguccioni, S. (2000). Gender stereotyping in television advertisements: A study of French and Danish television. Genetic, Social, and General Psychology Monographs, 126, 79–104.
Furnham, A., & Bitar, N. (1993). The stereotyped portrayal of men and women in British television advertisements. Sex Roles, 29, 297–310.
Furnham, A., & Farragher, E. (2000). A cross-cultural content analysis of sex-role stereotyping in television advertisements: A comparison between Great Britain and New Zealand. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, 44, 415–436.
Furnham, A., & Mak, T. (1999). Sex-role stereotyping in television commercials: A review and comparison of fourteen studies done in five continents over 25 years. Sex Roles, 41, 413–437.
Furnham, A., & Saar, A. (2005). Gender-role stereotyping in adult and children’s television advertisements: A two-study comparison between Great Britain and Poland. Communications, 30, 73–90.
Furnham, A., & Skae, E. (1997). Portrayals of men and women in British television advertisements. European Psychologist, 2, 14–51.
Furnham, A., & Voli, V. (1989). Gender stereotyping in Italian television advertisements. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, 33, 175–185.
Ganahl, D., Prinsen, T. J., & Netzley, S. (2003). A content analysis of prime time commercials: A contextual framework of gender representation. Sex Roles, 49, 545–551.
Gilly, M. C. (1988). Sex roles in advertising: A comparison of television advertisements in Australia, Mexico, and the United States. Journal of Marketing, 52, 75–85.
Glass, G. V., & Hopkins, K. D. (1996). Statistical methods in education and psychology (3rd.rd ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
Gunter, B. (1995). Television and gender representation. London: Libby.
Hofstede, G. H. (1990). Culture’s consequences. International differences in work-related values. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Hofstede, G. H. (1998). Masculinity and femininity. The taboo dimension of national cultures. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Hollman, K., Murrey, J., & Moser, H. (1985). An analysis of the role of women in insurance advertisements. CPCU Journal, 38, 216–223.
Infoadex (2001). Informe sobre la inversión en medios publicitarios. Año 2000 [Report on advertising media expenditure year 2000]. Madrid: Infoadex.
Infoadex (2004). Informe sobre la inversión en medios publicitarios. Año 2003 [Report on advertising media expenditure. Year 2003]. Madrid: Infoadex.
Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Encuesta de Población Activa. Año 1998 [Labor Force Survey. Year 1998]. Madrid: INE.
Kang, N., Kara, A., Laskey, H. A., & Seaton, F. B. (1993). A SAS macro for calculating intercoder agreement in content analysis. Journal of Advertising, 32, 17–28.
Kolbe, R. H., & Burnett, M. S. (1991). Content-analysis research: An examination of applications with directives for improving research reliability and objectivity. Journal of Consumer Research, 18, 243–250.
Krippendorff, K. (1980). Content analysis: An introduction to its methodology. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.
Kwangok, K., & Lowry, D. (2005). Television commercials as a lagging social indicator: Gender role stereotypes in Korean television advertising. Sex Roles, 53, 901–910.
Lazier, L., & Kendrick, A. G. (1993). Women in advertisements: Sizing up the images, roles, and functions. In P. J. Creedon (Ed.) Women in Mass Communication pp. 199–219. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
LaTour, M., Pitts, R., & Snook-Luther, D. (1990). Female nudity, arousal and ad response: An experimental investigation. Journal of Advertising, 19, 51–62.
Lee, Ch. (2004). Gender role stereotyping in television commercials: The case of Singapore. Advertising & Society Review, 5 (3), Retrieved January 8th, 2007 from http://muse.jhu.edu7journals/asr/toc/asr5.4.html.
Lovdal, L. T. (1989). Sex role messages in television commercials: An update. Journal of Advertising Research, 29, 15–23.
Lysonski, S., & Pollay, R. W. (1990). Advertising sexism is forgiven, but not forgotten: Historical, cross-cultural, and individual differences in criticism and purchase boycott intentions. International Journal of Advertising, 9, 319–331.
Manstead, A. S. R., & McCulloch, C. (1981). Sex-role stereotyping in British television advertisements. British Journal of Social Psychology, 20, 171–180.
McArthur, L., & Resko, B. (1975). The portrayal of men and women in American television commercials. Journal of Social Psychology, 97, 209–220.
Mikocka-Walus, A. (2004). Sexism in Polish and French TV advertising. ICSB Working Paper, Retrieved January 8th, 2007, from http://www.sbaer.uca.edu/research/icsb/2004/Papers%20pdf/015.pdf.
Milner, L., & Collins, J. (2000). Sex-role portrayals and the gender of nations. Journal of Advertising, 29, 67–79.
Neto, F., & Pinto, I. (1998). Gender stereotypes in Portuguese television advertisements. Sex Roles, 39, 153–164.
Pingree, S., Hawkins, R., Butler, M., & Paisley, W. (1976). A scale for sexism. Journal of Communication, 24, 193–200.
Royne, M. (1998). Advertising sex-typed services: The effects of sex, service type, and employee type on consumer attitudes. Journal of Advertising, 27, 65–81.
Scheneider, K., & Scheneider, S. (1979). Trends in gender roles in television commercials. Journal of Marketing, 43, 79–84.
Sexton, D., & Haberman, P. (1974). Women in magazine advertising. Journal of Advertising Research, 14, 41–46.
SGAE (2000). Informe sobre hábitos de consumo cultural [Report on cultural consume habits]. Madrid: Fundación Autor.
Siu, W., & Au, A. K. (1997). Women in advertising: A comparison of television advertisements in China and Singapore. Marketing Intelligence & Planning, 15, 235–243.
Utterström, T. (1977). Sex discrimination in advertising: A summary of the situation in Sweden. Journal of Consumer Policy, 1, 359–372.
Venkatesan, M., & Losco, J. (1975). Women in magazine ads: 1959–1971. Journal of Advertising Research, 15, 49–54.
Whipple, T., & Courtney, A. (1985). Female role portrayals in advertising and communications effectiveness: A review. Journal of Advertising, 14, 4–8.
Impact of Cultural and Social Reality on Marketing Activities: Gender Role Portrayals and Sexism in Spanish Commercials.
About this article
Cite this article
Royo-Vela, M., Aldas-Manzano, J., Küster, I. et al. Adaptation of Marketing Activities to Cultural and Social Context: Gender Role Portrayals and Sexism in Spanish Commercials. Sex Roles 58, 379–390 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-007-9341-y
- Content analysis
- Spanish commercials
- Gender role