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From Naturalisation to Sacralisation: Changing Paradigms for Analysing Visual Advertising
Unformatted Document Text:  19 19 The brand becomes the means of access to that sacred sphere of the media, of that which is not mundane and ordinary. To the extent that it eis pervasive, the brand has to mark the body, habitat, city, and yet it has to invoke belief in its own invisible capacities of transformation. Conclusion If earlier theorists used Lacan and others to consider how advertising provoked desire. Couldry’s type of analysis may help us understand how it produces belief. In the media which naturalise the world. Althusserians saw in ads, the capacity to hide the truth of social order by naturalising it. Cultural studies theories then argued that consumers and viewers could resist this domination by subverting the polysemy of the ads and find their own meaning. These arguments were often taken up by proponents of alternative media. These theories of resistance while attractive, failed to understand the evolution of advertising and brands. The pragmatic turn taken by Myers, Cook and others consider advertisements and other media not so much as ways of representing the world as ways of mediating between worlds and creating possible worlds for us to believe in and in which we can define ourselves. They are not representative of contexts but help produce the contexts of their reading. We have attempted to synthesise this view of advertising pragmatic meaning with Couldry’s analysis of the social meaning of the media. To argue that brands play a role of sacralisation or even a sacramental role of marking the individual with the signs of belonging to another non-ordinary media world. In this analysis , we find recurring again and again the notion of the frame. each theorist uses the concept differently. However we have tried to find a common point in these theories by defining frame as the point of meeting between the inside and outside of a text. In this last ad, we can see how the woman comes to ”incarnate” the brand. In the New York traffic ad, we can draw a type of homology between the frame within the mise-en-abyme and the body of the model itself. The role of framing and its relationship to the body is an area of research which could be developed. In the example we studied, the brand almost sacralises the body in a sacramental relationship. The ad creates a series of worlds, media world, ordinary world by a series of frames. This process of a Chinese box of frames ultimately allows the brand to be the means of communicating between worlds, of transforming them, of sacralising the ordinary. The literal meaning of advertising is somehow less important than its function, its capacity to define worlds which call us and maybe even interpolate us. We can see how advertising has the ability to make brands, not natural, but almost supernatural, to make them perform the equivalent of a sacred role, of transcending between worlds and sometimes defining the advertisement in a type of bodily incorporation of the brand. 11

Authors: Doyle, Waddick.
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19
The brand becomes the means of access to that sacred sphere of the media, of that which is
not mundane and ordinary. To the extent that it eis pervasive, the brand has to mark the
body, habitat, city, and yet it has to invoke belief in its own invisible capacities of
transformation.
Conclusion
If earlier theorists used Lacan and others to consider how advertising provoked desire.
Couldry’s type of analysis may help us understand how it produces belief. In the media
which naturalise the world. Althusserians saw in ads, the capacity to hide the truth of social
order by naturalising it. Cultural studies theories then argued that consumers and viewers
could resist this domination by subverting the polysemy of the ads and find their own
meaning. These arguments were often taken up by proponents of alternative media. These
theories of resistance while attractive, failed to understand the evolution of advertising and
brands.

The pragmatic turn taken by Myers, Cook and others consider advertisements and other media
not so much as ways of representing the world as ways of mediating between worlds and
creating possible worlds for us to believe in and in which we can define ourselves. They are
not representative of contexts but help produce the contexts of their reading. We have
attempted to synthesise this view of advertising pragmatic meaning with Couldry’s analysis of
the social meaning of the media. To argue that brands play a role of sacralisation or even a
sacramental role of marking the individual with the signs of belonging to another non-
ordinary media world.
In this analysis , we find recurring again and again the notion of the frame. each theorist uses
the concept differently. However we have tried to find a common point in these theories by
defining frame as the point of meeting between the inside and outside of a text. In this last ad,
we can see how the woman comes to ”incarnate” the brand. In the New York traffic ad, we
can draw a type of homology between the frame within the mise-en-abyme and the body of
the model itself. The role of framing and its relationship to the body is an area of research
which could be developed. In the example we studied, the brand almost sacralises the body in
a sacramental relationship. The ad creates a series of worlds, media world, ordinary world by
a series of frames. This process of a Chinese box of frames ultimately allows the brand to be
the means of communicating between worlds, of transforming them, of sacralising the
ordinary. The literal meaning of advertising is somehow less important than its function, its
capacity to define worlds which call us and maybe even interpolate us.

We can see how advertising has the ability to make brands, not natural, but almost
supernatural, to make them perform the equivalent of a sacred role, of transcending between
worlds and sometimes defining the advertisement in a type of bodily incorporation of the
brand.
11


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