Recognizing Common Themes in Advertising

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Join Leisa Vaughn, Georgia Historical Society Programs Intern, in Sophia’s Schoolhouse to improve your media literacy skills. Learn how advertisers, past and present, use emotions, product positioning, and ideas of success and rewards to appeal to customers.

After watching the videos below, visit the GHS website to explore the new online exhibit “From Waffle Fries to Global Skies: How Georgia Business Created the Modern World.” After reading the Introduction and Historical context page, click on each iconic Georgia company to learn more about its history and access advertisements past and present.

Every year the Georgia Historical Society selects a theme to act as the focus of study for the public programs and educational materials associated with the Georgia History Festival (GHF). The 2016 GHF theme, “From Waffle Fries to Global Skies: How Georgia Business Created the Modern World,” focuses on the individuals and companies that have shaped the economic, cultural, and social landscape of Georgia and the United States.

GHS has been studying and teaching about the individuals and companies that have shaped the economic, cultural, and social landscape of Georgia and the United States in the years following World War II with a variety of public programs, publications, and the development of online educational resources. One of the most engaging ways for students to study this topic is through the analysis of vintage advertisements. By studying advertisements from post-WWII America, students not only learn about the economic, cultural, and social landscape of the time period, but they also sharpen their media literacy skills.


Theme 1: Emotional Appeal

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New York Life Insurance Advertisement in Ladies Home Journal, October 1961.


Theme 2: Positioning Products

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Maybelline Advertisement in Ladies Home Journal, Summer 1962.


Theme 3: Rewards and Success

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