"Desire" collage

"Desire." Today in class, I lectured on Advertising Research. We discussed ZMET, in which researchers ask people a question, in this case, "what do you desire." People answer the question through making a collage on a blank piece of paper. I used a back copy of Vogue - from my bookshelf.

I explained to the students how the images represent desire for me. They accepted it, asked me questions, "What kind of dog would you like to have?" "A boxer, I had two when I was little, Rex and Max. His name would be Rex, and ... we would be best friends." "What is your ideal man like." "The right time, right place, and he feels he is good enough." Felt great to take this sort of risk, opening up a bit.

Also, I know from my dissertation research and my friends' work that collage is important for research, so I wanted to show how much you can tell from the images.

I'm looking at mine now, and all the relationship/feelings are on one side: enduring love, relationship with a pet. Enduring love.

On the other side are experiences: travel to Argentina and Croatia (coast) to see family, but also to see parts of Argentina that I haven't seen before. I have the image of the Mediterranean and an olive to represent the way of life: the art of doing nothing, laughter and love. Sun, salt, sea.

In the background is a house; I desire a house: a home, really. I want it to have built-in wood bookshelves with nice details in the cabinetry, and cool books and art. The bookshelves, the books, represent creativity to me: writing as self-expression and as part of my job/work. I want my house to be cozy and interesting. I want to have flowers and to feel serene.

In the middle, that's me. The tennis player, I want to improve my game, and to continue it. I'm proud I've kept up my hobbies in spite of my work obligations. I selected this model because she looks like a grown, adult woman. She is pretty and has a nice figure, she is elegant and feminine, and she seems self-assured, but not arrogant or unsure of herself. She knows who she is and that brings contentment. I think she looks like a successful professional.

The students will have an assignment of making their own "desire" collages and writing about them. I'm thinking I might make the theme "pride" instead.


Gruntled said…
If you offered your students the options of "desire" or "pride," do you think the women and men would tend to choose differently?
Balkan Barbie said…
Yes, this situation presents many opportunities to gather data. You present a good question.

I research pride - the way people feel it in social contexts.

Unfortunatley, I presented the desire collage and then later realized I could use this assignment for pride data collection. I give the homework assignment tomorrow; guess I'll make the pride collage tonight and bring it to class.

Hindsight is a big part of my early experiences teaching.

I'll do with desire or pride. If I offer both, and let them choose, then I will let you know the results, if there are any:).

I don't think male and female students would choose pride and desire differently, but maybe there would be a difference in how they discuss what each emotion means to them.

I've found, in my ethnographic research, that what I expect to be gender differences are not quite so. Good gender research can challenge ways of thinking.

I thought, at the start of my research, that women would be interested in tableware, but men would not have interest in tableware. I immediately found out that men are very interested in plates and how the table is set, at least in Zagreb. Both men and women are interested in food and symbols of family, culture, and status.

The difference is in their relationship to it compared to women's relationship to it.

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