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The Male Body as Advertisement

Masculinities in Hispanic Media


Edited By Juan Rey

The Male Body as Advertisement: Masculinities in Hispanic Media offers a multidisciplinary view of the body of men, of its practices and attributes, of its features, and, most importantly, of its use as a persuasive and expressive resource. Just as it occurred with the female body, the male body has become an object of desire in some instances and an object of expression in others.
This collection of essays represents several developments in the field of communication studies. It is the first time that a study on the body of men in the Hispanic media has been carried out using film, television, internet, billboards, and so forth. This book also equates men to women in the media world. Lacking its own tradition, the male body has followed in the footsteps of the female body. It has been objectified, stylized, and transformed into a weapon of persuasion to reach the modern man.
The Male Body as Advertisement can be useful for students of communication, anthropology, sociology, gender studies, and cultural studies. It will serve graduate students as a bibliographic reference for research on the male body as well as undergraduate students whose programs address issues related to gender studies. This work is also written to reach a wider audience beyond the university.
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4. Body and Beauty: The Cult of the Male Body in the Printed Press



This chapter’s focus1 addresses the rising obsession with the cult of the male body and its presence in today’s magazine advertising. This cult-like obsession was once solely reserved for the care and beauty of the face and has since spread to the entire body. This shift in view can be seen as the resurgence of a “new anthropocentrism,” which was once solely female. Furthermore, the fusion of mind and body, which formed the identity of human beings as the center of everything during the Renaissance, has morphed into a kind of “bodycentrism.” Today’s views have been reshaped and the worship of a person’s veneer is the object of adoration.

There are elements that differentiate man’s interest in the body, which suggest that the current idea of male body worship cannot directly be identified with the cult of beauty but instead, with the pursuit of personal satisfaction through, improved appearance. Today’s preoccupation with personal care is perceived more as a part of daily life than as a luxury.2 Cosmetic products are much more than just for the purposes of beautification. Almost all European consumers use cosmetics in their daily care because these products are important for their self-esteem, their well-being and even their health.

The next step in the transformation of beauty is that beauty is not exclusively an external condition. Consequently, the effect of body products has changed. These products are not only...

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