Save the penguins: Antarctic advertising and the PR of protection
Nielsen, H, Save the penguins: Antarctic advertising and the PR of protection, Anthropocene Antarctica: Perspectives from the Humanities, Law and Social Sciences, Routledge, E Leane and J McGee (ed), Abingdon, pp. 117-132. ISBN 9781138367593 (2019) [Research Book Chapter]
Antarctica has been framed in multiple ways over the course of its human history, including as a place for profit and as a place to protect. Contemporary Antarctica is seen simultaneously as fragile and treacherous; the continent is cast as a place that both threatens humankind and needs to be protected from the effects of anthropogenic climate change. Such dissonance is key to representations that call upon Antarctica to embody environmental ideas. This chapter examines how the fragile connotations of Antarctic imagery have been put to use in advertising material. First, it addresses the various ways in which Antarctica has been popularly framed since humans first began to physically interact with the place. A discussion of the commercialisation of polar imagery is followed by an analysis of three international advertising campaigns: ABB’s ‘amazing what you save’ (2002, 2005, 2008); Westpac’s ‘Equator Principles’ (2003, 2008); and Diesel’s ‘Global Warming Ready’ (2007) campaigns. In these case studies, advertisements for three very different industries are used as a proxy for accessing dominant attitudes towards the far south and to illustrate a contemporary face of the commercial history of Antarctica.
Research Book Chapter
Antarctica, advertising, media, humanities, language, social science, South Pole