Product commercials as lifestyle representations: a study on white goods and automobile commercials in Turkey between 1980-2012

Dimli Oraklıbel, Renk
This thesis presents discourses generated on lifestyles, products and gender via white goods and automobile commercials broadcasted in Turkey and transition experienced in these discourses from 1980 to 2012 with a historical approach, considering their interrelation with social, economic and political life. Moreover, it offers a methodological approach for semiotic analysis of the commercials and for generating structured discussions. It focuses on the commercials because as cultural products and tools for social communication, they (re)create the discourses in the society, and offer an omnipresent tool for these discourses to the society. Within the study, first a quantitative and a qualitative content analysis are conducted and later a semiotic analysis is made with selected white goods and automobile commercials to reach the meanings embedded in them. After that, each semiotic analysis is examined to extract the discourses that are promoted to the society. Lastly, the discourses generated via product commercials are categorized and discussed under three main categories as lifestyle, product and gender. Lifestyle discourses emerged from the analysis present parallelism with the cultural developments and dominant discourses in the society. As idealized representations, they follow the path of appraised way of living and promote appreciated lifestyles to the audience. The earliest and the latest commercials in the sample present detailed explanations about the underlined features of the products to audience; however, this pattern disappears between mid 90s and mid 2000s. The gender discourses are built on the subordination of women and dominance of men, and this approach maintained throughout the defined period.


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Citation Formats
R. Dimli Oraklıbel, “Product commercials as lifestyle representations: a study on white goods and automobile commercials in Turkey between 1980-2012,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2015.