Nike recently released a new commercial titled “Dream Crazier.” This commercial features extremely successful female athletes who have received scrutiny from the public or media based on their gender in relation to sports and their associated roles. Some of these athletes include Serena Williams, who was criticized for competing while pregnant, Caster Semenya, who is criticized for being too masculine, and women fighting off officials to continue running a marathon.
The prominent goal of companies like Nike creating commercials such as this one is to create a conversation about Nike, therefore increasing sales. This fact does not take away from the message in this commercial because it is consumers that react well and create the social media response that Nike is hoping for. These are the type of commercials we, as consumers, should be encouraging, and it is clear that companies already know this tactic works.
Throughout the history of sports, a conflict between athleticism and femininity has been present. Gender is a social construct and sport is a fantastic lens into the implications of gender within society. Recently it is becoming more acceptable for women to be strong, fast, and athletic. If gender norms in sport can change it is possible to translate this change to other parts of society too. Commercials such as this one bring attention to the female athletes that are making those changes in sport for future female athletes.
FEATURED IMAGE: Serena Williams narrates Nike’s new “Dream Crazier” commercial