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Comm 602_Research Translation_11.14.11_Emily Kelechi-Kelly (1)

Comm 602_Research Translation_11.14.11_Emily Kelechi-Kelly (1)

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Published by: Emily Kelechi Kelly on Oct 07, 2012
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RESEARCH TRANSLATION 1Research TranslationEmily J. Kelechi-KellyQueens University November 14, 2011
King, S. (2001). An all-consuming cause: breast cancer, corporate philanthropy, and the marketfor generosity.
Social Text 
(4), 115-143.
King discusses cause-related marketing from two perspectives – to illustrate the historicalconvergence between cultural preoccupation with philanthropic solutions to social problems, theneed for corporate philanthropy to be profitable, changing psychological perceptions of theconsumer and consumer demands for ethical capitalism producing the transformation of corporate philanthropy. Secondly, she shifts focus to the symbolic effects of cause marketing,citing a case study of the National Football League’s (NFL) “Real Men Wear Pink” breast cancer marketing campaign.King kick-starts the article by describing notable moments in corporate philanthropy history,from the 1950’s through the start of the millennium, and then moves into discussing the rise of  breast cancer marketing, detailing partnership between the NFL and the Susan G. Komen BreastCancer Foundation’s Race for the Cure and “Real Men Wear Pink” campaign. She takes a morecynical tone, suggesting the partnership between Komen and the NFL resulted from a survey thatfound 40% of the NFL’s weekly television viewers are women, the desire to revamp the NFL’s public image (after a string of NFL player arrests) as well as align with a “compassionate, yetstrong” perception of masculinity rather than serve strictly altruistic purposes.King concludes by suggesting a pairing of the masculinity the Real Men Wear Pink campaign produces gains its legitimacy and appeal from implicit difference from a demonized masculinity
RESEARCH TRANSLATION 4developed through criminal behavior and low moral character. While she states her point is notto suggest compassionate masculinity is a myth, she argues that the campaign is part of adiscourse in which a player’s character is assessed based on his involvement in volunteerism – suggesting volunteerism is synonymous with good character and understood, like race, to predicta player’s propensity to crime. Further, she suggests by aligning cause-related partnerships witha consumer’s desire to create depth and meaning to their lives through consumption, that these partnerships serve as “another yardstick against which the capacities of individuals to become proper Americans are measured.”
This article was presented to Tom Kelechi, President and CEO of the Alcohol and ChemicalAbuse Councils of Butler County. As a CEO with 30 years of experience leading non-profits, anavid football fan and history buff, I felt this article provided rich, dialogue-sparking content andcited examples that would be of particular interest both on a professional and personal level.We had three engaging conversations as well as an email exchange in which article specificswere discussed and shared thoughts on whether there is detriment or saturation in nonprofit/for  profit cause-based partnerships. His thoughts, obtained through notes and our emailconversations, are provided below.On whether cause marketing relationships could border on exploitation or saturation of a cause:“Most people use relationships to further self interests. When it is of mutual benefit itcannot be characterized as exploitive, but symbiotic. Examples are not exclusive of the business world. At an early age children recognize the value in being on the
team,the cheerleaders, and many more affiliations that advance the self interests from popularity and athletic prowess.

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