Written by Fatin Amalina
It is very obvious the fact that there is a lot of westernization going on in Malaysia lately. Some of us were even born and raise with the American culture and sometimes, we got confuse and think that their culture is ours! We eat what the Americans eat; we talk like how the Americans talk; we clothe like the Americans apparel.
At this point, there’s two important questions that we need to answer: Do we love the culture that the American brings or are we indoctrinated by them? With the advent of American culture in the advertisement, it seems to sweep the entire continent changing in every appearance whether from economic to social frameworks. Let’s have a little glance of what they promote in general:
The American standard of beauty
Beauty can be interpreted in many ways whether in appearances, forms or intellectuality,
but how we as a Malaysian define beauty may not be the same as how the American did. What the Americans define beauty as is still very stereotyping from then till now. Thin, fair skin, heavy makeups, blonde and blue-eyed, aren’t these typical? How the America sells and promotes, their version of beauty has nothing much changed. Ever notice, the America has always idolized these lookalike icons, Marilyn Monroe in 50s, Farrah Fawcett in 70s, Madonna in the 80s, Scarlett Johansson during the early 2000 and Taylor Swift, today.
What made it worst, is the idea of selling their standard of beauty has become deceptive, a false advertisement that corrupts mind especially the youth. America’s medium such as advertisements, television, and magazines advocate the impression that the slimmer you are, the better it will be. In my opinion, the selling of this ‘ideal image’ in their heads has made the audience believe that being slim, using excessive makeup, poking needles in their faces and spreading on anti-aging cream at a very young age are all necessary beauty trends.
The real fact about the Americans, not every one of them is as what they describe. If we take body figure as an example, most of them are overweight. Earlier, TIME affirms that:
The researchers estimate that during that time period, 40% of men were overweight and 35% of men were obese. They estimate that 30% of women were overweight and 37% were obese. The numbers are similar to those estimated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)., which suggest that one third of American adults are obese (Sifferlin A. , 2015)
It’s a bitter fact that sex plays a very prominent role in the Americans entertainment industry. The America frequently inserts the element of sex because they believe that sex sells their product. But, why? Sex sells because it captures the attention of an audience. People are hard-wired to notice sexually relevant information, so ads with sexual content get noticed. Women have always been the number one tool for the American advertiser to misuse their ethical manners in an advertisement. A very sexual, erotic and sensual image of women in advertising are pervasive that is to be known as most efficient persuasion tools.
Even the America sells too much sex in other form entertainment. Sex and The City is a very basic example of American television hit sitcom which I conclude the entire show only talks about sex. The shows are repeatedly broadcast on HBO and can easily download from the Internet.
The ideal way of having fun
Today’s music video has crosses the borderlines. A lot of Malaysian teenagers today are acting immoral and is the substitute from the exposure of what America is trying to sell to us and make people believe the supreme way of having joy and fun through their music videos. Americanisation has contributed to the causes of the increase in the number of abortion rates, illegitimate children and the surge in the number of single parents in the Malaysian societies. Traditionally, Malaysian societies were very conservative and the above mentioned problems were uncommon and condemned. This shows that the American culture has indirectly affected the mentality mind of the locals.
Sifferlin, A. (2015) More Than Two Thirds of Americans Are Overweight or Obese. TIME. Retrieved June 22, 2015, from http://time.com/3929990/americans-overweight-obese/