Thursday, June 17, 2010

What winning looks like

Wednesday was a big day for Chilean soccer. The national team's 1-0 victory over Honduras was the first World Cup win the country has been able to celebrate in almost 50 years. And celebrate Chileans did.

I just happened to be snapping a photo of this street corner in western Santiago's Yungay neighborhood when this car zoomed by. I've always wondered how many traffic accidents Chilean fans' love of mobile flag flying causes each year.

This seems like a safer place to wave the red, white and blue.

The salesperson at this hat kiosk outside Estacion Central was hesitant to let me take a photo of her heads until I told her I had a blog about Chile.

As you can see from the banner flying on the balcony, not even an 8.8 earthquake can stop diehard fans.

And, alas, more soccer-spawned sexism. These posters are advertising a mystery Father's Day promotion (I visited the website and still have no idea what it is) that promises soccer to men and "relaxation" to women. The man's poster is the same color as the national team's jersey and is headed by the phrase: "World Cup + Father's Day: Welcome to Paradise." The woman, on the other hand, stands awash in the sky blue of saintly motherhood below the phrase: "World Cup + Father's Day: You Deserve Heaven." In other words, "You're a Saint." Which you obviously are for putting up with your man's obvious love of soccer, which you obviously don't share, all while slaving over that enormous Father's Day luncheon.

Chile didn't pull out its best game on Wednesday, in my opinion. Let's just hope they were saving it for upcoming rivals Switzerland and Spain!


Anonymous said...

Sexism? Really?

One could also argue, somewhat convincingly, that this kind of advertising, which is hardly rare in Chile, is nothing but thinly veiled racism. This type of advertisement could very well have been produced by the "Strength Through Joy" programme.

Practically all the people portrayed in these posters look Caucasian and have very light skin, despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of Chileans are mestizos and many of them have darker skin. Shouldn't the photos provide a more accurate representation of the Chilean population? How about some brown skin and indigeneous features for a change?

For another example of this type of dubious advertising campaign, check out the "Me encanta Providencia" posters, where you can find pictures of all kind of Aryan looking people, supposedly Chilean, that claim to share a common love for this comuna.

Leigh said...

Good observation. Although I'm not familiar with "Strength Through Joy," I absolutely agree that much of Chilean advertising is dripping with racism. I used to wait at a bus stop every morning in Providencia and noticed the same thing about the "Me encanta Providencia" campaign. I'm glad I'm not the only one that finds it disturbing.

In a country where skin tone is perceived as being closely tied to socioeconomic class and standards of beauty, it's no surprise that companies (and, apparently, comunas) want the public to associate their products with a lovely life of luxury by using blond, light-skinned models. That doesn't excuse it. I know blonds who are tan chilenos como los porotos and have no problem with blond people appearing in Chilean ads per se, but I find it sinister that the "face of desirability" portrayed in advertising here so frequently has features that are significantly lighter than those of the majority.

I maintain that the ad in my post is sexist. Looks like I'll have to add suspicion of racism to the indictment too.

sarabeck said...

I like your heads. It cracks me up that she didn't want you to snap the photo. That's when I would do it anyways, just all incognito.

As for the anonymous comment. It seems quite common in many parts of the world to put the lighter skinned people in ads and photos.

This is a little different, but I actually read an article here in the Pioneer Press not too long ago about the new St. Paul school superintendent (She's from Chile) and they seemed to want to say that she was poor or at least struggle in Chile, but when they described her family and showed her photo (she is lighter skinned) I knew that it wasn't like that. I almost felt like writing to the paper, but in the end I didn't.

Pia Franz said...

Hola, soy Chilena tengo 21 años y me gustaria dejar mi opinión respecto a tu entrada.
Los chilenos nos caracterizamos por irnos a los extremos, es decir si ganamos en algo lo celebramos como que fuera lo único y más importante y si perdemos, la actitud siempre es decir "yo ya lo había dicho antes, nadie me escucho, si somos malos". Eso determina mucho nuestra relación con los argentinos ya que siempre nos hemos sentido achicados por ellos ya que en general siempre se muestran muy exitistas.
Respecto de la publicidad del día del padre creo que hay una inconexión entre la realidas y el estereotipo. En los noticieros si se han fijado aparecen muchas familias (padres, madres, hijos, hijas)celebrando y/o opininando respecto del fútbol, esto es porque hace ya bastante tiempo las mujeres nos hemos integrado al fútbol, ya sea jugándolo o viendo partidos. Este deporte ya dejó, hace rato de ser exclusivo de hombres. Sin embargo, la publicidad aún encasilla al hombre como el que realmente ve fútbol y lo disfruta, versus la mujer como su contraparte, que lo odia y que todo lo relacionado a ello es aborrecido por "ellas".

osborn18 said...

"In other words, "You're a Saint." Which you obviously are for putting up with your man's obvious love of soccer, which you obviously don't share, all while slaving over that enormous Father's Day luncheon."

Hold on a second, how can you read all that from you are a saint?.
Couldnt be she deserves heaven for being a good mom?. Isnt that what fathers day is about?.
The ad is sexist because it doesnt say the father deserves heaven too, in other words Guys are not good dads.

And Cielo and paraiso are the same thing. So i guess i can see the point of the ad(the mall being heaven).

From all the blogs i have been reading of the WC, it seems like feminist all complain about the sexism of assuming women dont care as much about football...
Yet they never talk about the WC, nothing about the games, how are the groups doing, nothing.

IMO confirming the stereotype true. Guys have been watching almost every single game, while women only watch their country(at most).