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Sacred and profane view of Christmas in advertising


  • Mădălina MORARU (BUGA)

    () (University of Bucharest)


This article investigates the way seasonal advertising campaigns convey the paradoxical relationship between sacred and profane views of Christmas. The following research reveals the differences between commercialized and religious Christmas celebrations by analyzing the advertisements running on the Romanian market between November 15th and December 25th, 2012. The present study focuses on the following topics: the values promoted by both local and international brands, the sacred mindset versus the profane behavior of commercial characters, TV ad format, global and local features indentified in the advertising message, and, finally, verbal representations of Christmas. Our findings reveal a simple conclusion: advertising creates a glocalized image of Christmas that combines the global images of Coca-Cola and Santa Claus with local traditions and religious practice. Even if the general perception of Christmas does not always rely on the sacred meaning of this celebration, consumers still behave in a religious manner, regardless of age, education level, or culture. However, regardless how deeply brands have globalized and, sometimes, made a myth from their values (e.g., Coca-Cola), Christmas in advertising cannot ignore local aspects, which, naturally, emphasize the sacred dimension of this celebration.

Suggested Citation

  • Mădălina MORARU (BUGA), 2013. "Sacred and profane view of Christmas in advertising," Revista Romana de Jurnalism si Comunicare - Romanian Journal of Journalism and Communication, University of Bucharest, Faculty of Journalism and Communication Studies – Universitatea din Bucuresti, Facultatea de Jurnalism si Stiintele Comunicarii, issue 4, pages 26-38.
  • Handle: RePEc:foj:journl:y:2013:i:4:p:26-38

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    More about this item


    Religious behaviour; sacralization; commercialism; glocalized Christmas.;

    JEL classification:

    • M37 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Advertising


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