HI 359 Homework Assignment #4C

The Immigrant and Consumer Culture


You will analyze an advertising campaign that is either direct toward immigrants as customers or that includes immigrants as part of the advertisement. You may consider print, radio, or television advertisements from 1940 to 2000.

Research Guidelines:

  1. Select an advertising campaign from any time between 1940 and 2000.
  2. Scan or copy print advertisements. You are required to submit a copy with your work.
  3. 3.Include an active URL for television or radio advertisements.
  4. Write a full citation for your source using Chicago style.
  5. You may ask the librarian for help.
  6. You may not work together. (No collaboration. This is not a group project.)
  7. Double-space your answers.
  8. Submit your work via the Homework Assignment #4 link on Blackboard.

•The advertisement can either be trying to sell a product to an immigrant community or it can feature immigrants in the ad itself.

The advertisement is your primary source.

•Print advertisements can come from magazines, posters, newspapers etc.

•Television (or radio) advertisements can come from non-academic sources like YouTube or the internet archive.

•Because libraries have been slow to start collecting advertisements, you may need to be creative in your sources. Whenever possible try to check that what is posted is in its original, unaltered format.

The Questions:

  • (1)What is your advertisement? When was it produced? What product was it selling?
  • (2)How do immigrants feature in the advertisement? Or, how is the advertisement directed toward immigrants as possible consumers of the good being sold?
  • Consider the following quotation from Marilyn Halter who has studied consumer habits among immigrants. In her book Shopping for Identity, she concluded, “Whereas participation in the emergent mass consumer culture of the early part of the [twentieth] century most often functioned as an effective mode of adaptation to mainstream America for new-immigrant arrivals, descendants of those same immigrants today often seek out consumer goods for the opposite purpose of accentuating their cultural distinctiveness.” Briefly explain this quotation. (2 or 3 sentences)
  • Given the advertisement that you found, apply Halter’s theory. Do you think the advertisement is encouraging the potential buyer to assimilate into American culture or do you think that the advertisement is helping or encouraging consumers to retain some of their heritage?
 
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