Using metaphors to communicate Gender Equality issues in advertising


  • Ana Maria Sarmento Doutoranda em Ciências da Comunicação: Comunicação e Ciências Sociais Universidade Nova de Lisboa


metaphors and advertising, multimodal metaphors, cultural perspectives, gender equality


The main objective of this paper is to assess how visual and textual metaphors reasoning is used in advertising communication to promote Gender Equality issues. For this purpose, it is here analysed a film advertisement promoting a Gender Equality topic in a specific cultural context using multimodal metaphors. The results shows that a multimodal metaphor understanding is relevant to the study of Communication in International Development field, mainly when metaphors are used to communicate within different cultures. The findings also exemplify the cautions necessary while using metaphors in order to illustrate a cross-culture issue due to the culture perspective differences. How culture is rooted in the way viewers from different backgrounds might arrive at the intended interpretation of the same multimodal metaphors, and therefore a clear comprehension of the cultural assumptions, values and beliefs is essential. In addition, it illustrates that by allowing discussion when the audience is familiar with the subject, metaphors as perceive can influence in social change behaviour. Assuming the multiplicity of cultural assumptions on Gender Equality in different regions, this paper aims to contribute to the international development field by illustrating how advertising on Gender Equality issues can use multimodal metaphors to communicate initiatives on this matter in different cultural contexts.


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