Stern, Barbara B.; and Russell, Cristel A. Consumption Markets & Culture
, vol. 7, pgs. 371 - 394 (2004)The paper presents a study of consumer responses to products placed in a sitcom, "Ads R' Us," created as a stimulus to ascertain the influence of a television program's genre and male/female respondents' sex on responses. Textual analysis is used to analyze sitcoms, a category of programs created in accordance with genre conventions, the structural framework that influences responses to media vehicles. First-generation feminist reading theory, which challenged the patriarchal assumptions mostly unquestioned in the US until the early 1960s, is used to analyze responses produced by second-generation respondents, who came of age a generation later, after the women's liberation movement led to socio-cultural changes. The study draws from multidisciplinary theory and integrates stimulus-side/response-side research to enhance understanding of the text-context-consumer relationship. Findings indicate that second-generation responses to placed products are problematized by the coexistence of patriarchal and feminist perspectives that color male/female readings of sitcoms.