Be Proud of Your Menstruation! A case study of commodity feminist discourse in mainland China.
Abstract: Adopting a critical discourse analysis approach, this study presents a case study around the “Menstruation should not be hidden” campaign launched by the Swedish brand, Libresse, in the Chinese market. With the aim to explore how does the brand strategically use female empowering discourse to construct new meanings of menstruation for a regional market, and the socio-cultural factors involved. This study provides a comprehensive interpretation of the brand's promotional materials and the views of the female members in two focus groups. Taking the application of feminism in brand communication as an entry point and continuing the perspective of critical media studies, this study analyses the intersection and interaction between the values conveyed by brands and socio-cultural values in the practice of corporate intercultural communication in a global context. In particular, social justice issues are explored through the case of commodified female empowerment discourse. Three main conclusions are drawn. Firstly, around the development of Orientalism in the new century, the unequal power relations implied behind the mismatch between the image of Chinese women in advertising and the view within the country are indicated. Secondly, the study confirms the emergence of new trends in the use of feminist ideas in the taboo commodities and suggests that empowerment has become a theme in the promotion of feminine hygiene products. Finally, the critical subjectivity of consumers is emphasized between the analysis of female consumers' criticality and affirmation of the femvertising.
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