Quaker Oats has announced that before the end of this year, the Aunt Jemima brand will be retired as they recognize the name and image’s “origins are based on a racial stereotype.” The new name has not been announced. Additionally, Quaker Oats is pledging $5 million over the next five years to “create meaningful, ongoing support and engagement in the Black community.”
So I have to admit, my immediate first thought was “it’s cool that Land of Lakes and now Aunt Jemima are taking steps to end harmful representation, but if we remove ALL people of color from branding, how long until we’re only left with white people and animal mascots?”
But then I realized that that’s okay, because no one ever got inspired by seeing themselves represented in mascot branding. Unlike other forms of media, which can portray their characters as strong or competent, mascot branding is kind of an inherently degrading position. No one minds seeing a cute animal selling product. No one wants to see their race, gender, or creed evoked to sell a product.
Posted by: TAWD on June 21, 2020