Killing Us Softly: 40th Anniversary Celebration

Date: September 26, 2019 • 4:30 - 6:30 p.m.
Presenters: Jean Kilbourne, Ed.D.
Location: Collins Cinema at the Davis Museum of Wellesley College

Jean Kilbourne

Join the Wellesley Centers for Women for a celebration of the 40th anniversary of Jean Kilbourne’s groundbreaking film “Killing Us Softly: Advertising’s Image of Women.” Light fare will be served at 4:30 p.m. and the program will begin at 5:00 p.m. The program is cosponsored by Women's and Gender Studies and Cinema and Media Studies.

First made in 1979 and remade three times since, the “Killing Us Softly” film series lays bare a misogynistic fantasy world of undernourished, sexualized and objectified women, and examines these images against the real-world backdrop of eating disorders, violence against women, and the political backlash against feminism.  For four decades, Kilbourne has challenged viewers to question traditional gender norms and think critically about the fundamental relationship between representation and power.

The event will feature clips from the films and discussion with Kilbourne, a Wellesley alumna and senior scholar at the Wellesley Centers for Women, on what has and hasn’t changed in the last forty years.

Jean Kilbourne is internationally recognized for her pioneering work on the image of women in advertising and for her critical studies of alcohol and tobacco advertising. She is the creator of the award-winning “Killing Us Softly: Advertising’s Image of Women” film series and the author of Can’t Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel and So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids. She holds an honorary position at the Wellesley Centers for Women and recently received an Alumnae Achievement Award, Wellesley College’s highest honor. In 2015 she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.


This program is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the Davis Parking Facility. For accessibility questions, contact Accessibility Services at Wellesley College.

For questions or to confirm program lineup: wcw@wellesley.edu or 781.283.2500

Wellesley Centers for Women
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