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Muse on Madison Avenue

Classical Mythology in Contemporary Advertising


Karelisa Hartigan

Classical mythology frequently serves to promote the good life as defined by American advertising. This book shows how the myths of ancient Greece permeate the persuasive work of Madison Avenue, where advertising promotes a desirable world and lifestyle. In antiquity, a community’s myths defined and sustained a common social order; in modern times advertising plays this role. The designers of American advertising have turned to classical myth to give shape to their vision of the American dream.
Contents: Historical Background. An Overview of Myths in Ads from the 1950s to the 1990s – Dominant Figures of Myths in Advertisements – A Richer Life Through Classical Myth: Ancient Legends Enhance Modern Advertising and Modern Life – The Classical Conceit – The Company Logo.