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In the episode “Indian Summer” of Mad Men, the ad men are discussing how to market a new weight-loss belt and enlist Peggy to try it out and give them a first-hand testimonial. When Peggy asks the men why they picked her, Don replies that it’s simply because she’s a woman. When Peggy comes back to the men with her presentation, the situation is very awkward for her as the device turns out to serve more sexual purposes than anything practical. After the presentation is over, the men condescendingly give Peggy a pat on the back as they leave the conference room. The views of the men on how women need to watch their figure is very objectifying and degrading. Meanwhile, one of the most popular diets for men was called “The Drinking Man’s Diet” which was published by Robert Cameron in 1964. The name describes the gist of the diet, which involved lots of protein, low carbs and, of course, lots of alcohol. The contrast between how ridiculous women’s dieting was and how lighthearted men’s dieting was accentuates the varying roles in the male-dominant society of the 1960’s.
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Links referenced: Rutherford, Diane. "A Bizarre History of Diet Fads in America." Suite101.com. Burda Digital Ventures, 25 Mar. 2009. Web. 24 Sept. 2012. <http://suite101.com/article/a-bizarre-history-of-diet-fads-in-america-a104774>.