The Sexual Politics of Meat in a Wine Ad

In The Sexual Politics of Meat, I argued that "a cycle of objectification, fragmentation, and consumption" links butchering and sexual violence in our culture. While some of the most startling confirmation of this claim is found in meat ads, in our advertising-saturated culture, this cycle can be found in other than meat ads, as well. Primary culprits: advertisements for trucks or other male-identified vehicles and advertisements for alcohol. 

In Australia, Premier Estates Wine has unveiled a new ad whose take line is "Taste the Bush." http://www.thegrocer.co.uk/buying-and-supplying/marketing/premier-estates-wine-urges-consumers-to-taste-the-bush/523042.article

A woman dressed in white (representing virginity?), holding a glass of red wine, discusses how inexpensive it is. (This is another trope found in meat ads: young women's bodies advertising cheap kinds of food from dead animals like hamburgers.) While the woman in the wine ad is granted a voice, visually, she is made the center of attention. Thus objectification begins. 

Objectification leads to fragmentation: in this case, the tagline, "Taste the Bush." Often fragmentation of women's bodies is expressed through double entendres (in meat ads such as "are you a breast man or a leg man?). "Bush" is slang for women's pubic area. But, as with other fragmenting language about women in which the part stands for the whole, it also means "women regarded as sexual objects."

As I say in The Sexual Politics of Meat, "once fragmented, consumption happens": literal consumption of animals' bodies and visual consumption (implying sexual consumption), of women's bodies. In the wine ad, this is represented as she places her glass of red wine immediately in front of her pubic area, pointing toward her own "bush." That she is drinking red wine makes me think the advertisers wants us to think of the "deflowering"  of a "virgin" (patriarchal conceits that are a part of The Sexual Politics of Meat). Take a look and see what you think:

 The glass of wine as visual focal point that completes the objectification, fragmentation, and consumption of the woman. 

The glass of wine as visual focal point that completes the objectification, fragmentation, and consumption of the woman.