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S. Casciani, L. Ferri

John Carroll University (UNITED STATES)
Focusing on the visual and spoken language used by Italian TV advertisements from the late 1950s to the present time, the paper will analyze the relationship between sexually charged language and food, which results in a synesthetic communication device. It will analyze a recent series of commercials of a well known brand of yogurt in which the concept of taste is portrayed through a strong sexual connotation. The study considers the reasons for which such a message is not viewed as obscene to the Italian viewers, whereas it would not be acceptable to the American audience. The study of the visual and spoken language of TV advertisement represents an ideal field of research that will focus on the understanding of cultural differences and how the message is received and interpreted by consumers in different countries. The pedagogical value of such a study will enhance students’ understanding of cultural differences.