Soap-Bubble “Empowerment”: Dove’s Missed Chance

The Lobster Dance

Dove’s “Real Beauty” Campaign‘s latest attempt to engage consumers has gone viral, and you’ve likely seen some of the criticisms about it. The video “Real Beauty Sketches” depicts a group of women being asked to describe their physical appearance (faces) to an FBI profile artist who couldn’t see them; afterward, the women were described by strangers, including each other. The punchline is that the drawings on of the women based on their own descriptions are far less conventionally attractive than those based on others’ descriptions, and the tagline is “You’re More Beautiful Than You Think.”

Not buying it.

“A Social Experiment”

From Dove’s Youtube page:

Women are their own worst beauty critics. Only 4% of women around the world consider themselves beautiful. [Ed: Where are your citations, Dove?] At Dove, we are committed to creating a world where beauty is a source of confidence, not anxiety…

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Author: Camara Dia Holloway

I am an art historian specializing in early twentieth century American art with particular focus on the history of photography, race and representation, and transatlantic modernist networks. I earned my PhD at Yale University in the History of Art Department. Besides my leadership role as the Founding Co-Director of the Association for Critical Race Art History (ACRAH), I am recognized for my expertise on African American Art, particularly African American Photography, and as a seasoned consultant for exhibitions, museum collections, and symposia/lectures planning.

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