This advertising campaign gives a turn to sexual reification; change gender roles


The woman used as an object in advertising campaigns is something that we encounter on a daily basis and we also see sculptural girls in miniskirts, tailored dresses, lingerie and swimsuits promoting items for men. Many of us are offended because the reification of women is promoted, but there is good news, advertising times and ideals are taking a 180º turn.

Suitsupply is a Dutch company that sells its garments and accessories in 15 countries of the world, has a line called Suistudio that promotes suits for women and now they have turned their advertisements and creating controversy because the men who appear there are naked.

Unclothed men

The headline of the campaign alludes to the fact that his costumes are also produced for women. The images show the woman in a position that denotes power and dominance. Dressed in tailored suits that make her look like an executive.

The males as part of the scenery

It is a campaign that overturns the sexist ideologies that abound in the media. The males pose naked without showing their faces, as if they were decorative objects, without name or history.

Changing social stigmas

Not everyone agrees with this risky publicity, some accuse the vice president of the brand, Kristina Barricelli and her advertising team for reifying the man. Barricelli responded in this way:

There is nothing wrong with sex, it is the naked human body, and the inclusion in our campaign. Sex is an important part of fashion. The problem is that in the most recent history, we have not had men reified in the background. How strange, why not?

Powerful and dominant women

In the past, the brand carried out other campaigns with strong sexual images, but women were the object and were accused of machismo. Is it a way to amend the controversy?

The company's work is a call to viewers to reconsider the rigid roles of genres that have been reinforced by advertising for years.

Men converted into furniture

According to recent studies conducted by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, researchers found that ads have twice as many male characters as female, and girls who appear only say one line and with the least amount of clothing possible, while males are shown as an intelligent figure as doctors or scientists. This campaign turns a reality.

Is reification acceptable, regardless of gender?

This advertising campaign does not offer a worthy solution to the problem of sexism in the media, but it serves to take a little more awareness and push the advertising companies to be more equitable and the audience to imagine if the treatment is really acceptable. He has given the female figure over the years.

I. Glenn Cohen Chair Lecture | "The Second Reproductive Revolution" (September 2020)