The Performance of Advertisements

While driving through Hollywood on my way to work, I was prompted to take this photo (while stopped in bumper to bumper traffic of course) because it triggered my memory of several important theorists that we have studied in this course. Goffman, Marx and Marcuse all came to mind as I watched these proletariats hanging off the side of a skyscraper on a rickety scaffold to replace the enormous advertisement from Activate Water to TV Land. This advertisement will likely generate money for TV Land, the actress displayed on the front, the owner of the building, and anyone else involved in the production of the show. I’m not sure how much these workers are paid but considering how much revenue is likely generated, I’m guessing they are not being paid nearly enough for all the risks that are involved in the work. Hence, it’s a great example of Marx’s theory on the exploitation of the worker to ensure that the capitalist makes a profit and the consumer continues fueling the vicious cycle of capitalism. 

Continue reading

The Blurring of the “I” and “Me”

In this scene of the 1997 film Liar Liar, Jim Carrey’s character is forced to go before the executive board of the law firm he works for and give his honest opinion of his superior. The whole premise of the movie is that due to his son’s birthday wish, Carrey cannot tell a lie. This includes the seemingly innocent white lies that people tell on a daily basis. As a result of this, Carrey bares his sincere and painfully honest opinions of everyone in the boardroom. These opinions are obviously offensive and the whole time Carrey wishes he could lie about how he actually feels.

Continue reading