Exploring Advertising and Product Design Sexual Implications: A Sociocultural Approach

  • Johannis Tsoumas


This paper explores design thought and application on various fields of its domain, under the prism of the human sexuality. However the two main areas of our concern are the fields of advertising and product design which, according to the author, represent the most significant parts on which the concept of human sexuality is thoroughly applied and still remains effective. Designing under this instinctive human value, one can easily trace the importance of concepts such as charm and pleasure, which can overlap and possibly ‘beat to death’ the concepts of usability and quality of use, in many ways. The starting point of this allegory in handling and promoting new products, most of which are not directly connected with the sense of sexuality, are the advertisements. On the other hand, one will be able to find out the myth of gender and its contradictions in a certain group of products which have direct sexuality references and most of them are designed for a limited, however faithful and increasingly concerned consumer group. Thirdly, the author aims to focus on the ‘discovery’ of socially marginalized consumer groups, such as the homosexual community, by some inventive entrepreneurs and designers, for the formation of a ‘new market’ which seems to thrive in terms of profit. As this, meteoric rise, market is directly connected with analogous social changes globally, one will be able to understand its development, but also the exploitation of homosexual behaviour, via the ideological points of both sides: designers and consumers.


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