Abstract: Advertising and the Middle-Class Female Consumer in Munich, c. 1900-1914

Monica Neve


In this essay, I consider the emergence of ideas about the relationship between women and consumption in early twentieth-century Germany. I am concerned primarily with assumptions about women's buying instincts and how attempts by advertisers and retailers to capture the attention of women contributed to a "feminization" of consumption. Of central importance is the development of specific ideas about the relationship between women and consumption, and the way these concepts contributed to shopping becoming socially ingrained as a gender-specific activity. The discussion draws upon German advertising and trade journals, as well as on the advertising strategies of four Munich firms that served as case studies for a larger research project.

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