ECD at O&M Johannesburg Mariana O’Kelly: "Should The Glass Lion Be Made From Tougher Stuff?"

Adland: 

What is the Glass Lion? Well, if you hadn't heard, the Glass Lion "recognises work that implicitly or explicitly addresses issues of gender inequality or prejudice, through the conscious representation of gender in advertising". Basically it's the WIN awards, but now in Cannes ( flashback to 2004: Whatever happened to the prime directive, "Enough with the chick awards already")
The award was created in partnership with LeanIn.Org, the organisation founded by Sheryl Sandberg "to achieve true equality". It's likely named "the Glass lion" as a reference to the glass ceiling and to enable headline writers to talk about "shattering gender stereotypes".

Now the joint ECD at O&M Johannesburg Mariana O’Kelly asks "Should The Glass Lion Be Made From Tougher Stuff?", which is a good question because the "gender stereotypes" that the award aims to shatter include femininity. She says: " If its intention is to show the world as it ‘should be’, as a woman I’m not sure what that ‘should be’ should look like." Good point, one woman's revolutionary new toy is another woman's gender stereotypical joke pandering to a new trend.

O’Kelly continues :

I don’t want to see a world where women become men. I believe in femininity, not feminism. But that’s my personal opinion and I guess I am lucky to live in a country where the acceptance level of differences between cultures and gender have come a long way.

I do think that this new award needs a different name, as glass is something that can break easily, that’s fragile. It’s perhaps not the best connection to an award that wants to inspire work that portrays woman in the exact opposite light.

She's a got a point there.

Comments (2)

  • David Felton's picture
    David Felton

    Like Mariana O’Kelly, I'm a big believer in equality, not so much in feminism - or what that word now means (we can argue the semantics at length over booze).

    Glass can break. It's fragile. But it also lets the light in. It lets us see out to a larger world. That's a different way of thinking about it.

    Another name... Cannes Lioness anyone?

    Jun 24, 2015
  • Dabitch's picture
    Dabitch

    There was some epic joking about the winner of a "women's award" being a sanitary pad product last night that I can't repeat now because it was very much a "you had to be there" sort of thing. Also, you have to be very cynical.

    Jun 24, 2015

Leave a comment

about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm.