Air Jordan Analysis

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Nike, the producer of Air Jordans, controls nearly 85 percent of the basketball shoe market and the brand continues to be one of top selling sneakers since their release in 1989. Why is this? Maybe it’s because Air Jordans are more than a shoe to our society. While functionally, they may act as footwear, culturally, it is evident that they represent wealth, fashion, high class, and a multitude of other ideals that surround materialism, and saldy these ideals control certain communities more than others. Air Jordan is a shoe brand known for its athleticism and style . Since their release in 1989, there has been thirty-two different styles of Air Jordans produced. Releasing a new sneaker almost every year, has allowed Air Jordan to stay relevant,…show more content…
The ad I specifically analyzed perfectly showcases this as it is centered around a group of young men playing basketball. The main person in the ad is dunking over all the other players as they’re trying to block him, but it looks as if nothing can get in his way. Under this scene there are the words, “Rise Above”, implying the young man's ability to dunk, or “rise above”, is due to his Jordans. On the surface, this ad conveys the idea that wearing Jordans can elevate your athleticism and projects the sporty vibe that the Air Jordan brand is centered around. However, upon deeper analysis, it’s evident that this ad conveys an extremely materialistic and power hungry message. This is shown by the imagery of the young man dunking over a whole court of basketball players. Through this action he exercises dominance over the other players as they have no control over the situation. The words “Rise Above” also imply that he is higher and more powerful than everyone under. As for the idea of materialism, this is seen in how the players are on a concrete, street court that is fairly dilapidated and littered with graffiti. The men are all wearing simple, worn out clothes, but they all have on high end Air Jordans. This scene has the potential to tell consumers that it’s of utmost importance to have expensive, high end Jordans, even if you can't afford them, and further nurtures our…show more content…
The brand is extremely controversial because it is infamous for branding their expensive shoes towards low income, African American communities and this is very evident, once again, in the ad I analyzed. There is a group of young men, mostly minorities, playing basketball. They’re on a concrete street court that is extremely dilapidated and the players are all wearing simple, worn out clothes, however they do have on expensive Jordans. The young man dunking is wearing maybe the nicest pair of Jordans and, as written below, he is “rising above” the other players. This is problematic because it is purposely appealing to Blacks sense of struggle. Air Jordan does this by showing a young black man, in the “ghetto”, overcoming his obstacles and succeeding, making other black consumer believe they can do the same thing if they go out and buy Air Jordans. Other Air Jordan advertisements mainly revolve around black culture as well, These ads include athletes, celebrities, and environments that mainly Black people can relate to. According to The Racial Divide on ... Sneakers, the brand associates their shoes with the upper echelon of Black culture in order to attract desperate and underprivileged Blacks. It specifically says Air Jordan uses people like Michael Jordan, Spike Lee and other icons of Black excellence in order to connect with the Black community. Air Jordan puts special

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