One specific paradigm of myths is those that relate to the perceptions we may hold about different ethnicities. A surface level interpretation, these myths may seem harmless, however if we are to dissect these generalizations they are often extremely detrimental toward those of whom they are aimed.
The picture above is a photo I took in a café recently. I was quite astounded to see a chilli sauce bottle named “Hot! Samoan Boys Chilli Sauce” and immediately began to unpack the myth that could have led to the naming of this sauce. Personally I believe this may be the eroticization of the exotic; the sexualization of the other, yet obviously in a drastically euphemized form. I am not specifically sure as to where this idea of an overtly eroticized exotic originated from, however I would guess it has roots in colonial times when the British were seeking conquest of any and all land they set foot upon. One such method in attaining power was to ‘breed out’ any ‘inferior’ indigenes.
So, why is this myth being used to sell a particular brand of chilli sauce? Again I am simply guessing as I have no background information on this sauce or who makes it; yet I assume it is attempting to cater toward a early to middle aged women, who may see this myth as an erotic fantasy.
Another myth we are accustomed to seeing within the advertising world is ‘fresh food’. Fast food chains are continually waging an ongoing battle against negative media coverage of their products; this is an example of two conflicting ideologies. Fast food chains are portrayed (most likely justifiably) as being unhealthy and often unsustainable, so they tend to address this attention by utilizing a myth of fresh or authentic food. They euphemize their product.
I took this photo of a domino’s pizza box as the design caught my attention, apparently the dominos sauce is made from vine ripened tomatoes. This may not necessarily be a lie, however I am skeptical as to whether they are grown in an organic beautiful orchard as the picture connotes. Sure most tomatoes do ripen on the vine, and the paste that they use to make their sauce probably contains a considerable amount of tomato extract so they can therefore claim that their sauce is made from vine ripened tomatoes. I would go so far as to personally guarantee that tomatoes in the form depicted on the box have never been seen within a dominos fast food franchise.
The average everyday consumer sees this image and then feels validated in their choice of purchasing from such fast food chains. On a side note it is interesting to discuss what are considered the ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ choices about diet this in itself seems to be moralizing upon another myth regarding what is “real food” (real food in this myth referring to unprocessed organic or sustainable).