MIT Visualizing Cultures
Selling Shiseido Curriculum
Table of Contents

Lesson 01
The Images in the Mirror: Women as
Reflections of Social & National Change
By Lynn Parisi

In this lesson, students will analyze Shiseido advertising to women during particular periods in the first half of the 20th century, a time in which Japan assumed a greater role in the international arena and became a major nation in the world—economically, politically, and militarily. From their analysis of Shiseido advertising, students will identify ways in which women reflected and shaped an increasingly modern and cosmopolitan society. Students will identify ways in which changing depictions of women reflected national changes and set norms as well as ideals for the people of Japan.

Lesson 02
Women Go to War
By Lynn Parisi

In this activity, students will analyze wartime-period Shiseido magazine covers and advertising messages to identify the expectations for women in a Japan at war in the 1930s and 1940s. Students will then conduct individual or group research online or in the school library to compare the messages and expectations directed at women in wartime Japan with those in the United States. How did war expectations and standards for women compare across two countries at war?

Lesson 03
Cosmetics as History
By Karen Johnson & Patty Koller

In this lesson, students will explore historical changes in the definition of beauty in Japan. Students will use Visualizing Cultures to make an evolutionary study of images of Japanese women. They will study various art styles prevalent in Japan from 1877 to 1960, then analyze the different types of women that emerged during the Meiji period and the role advertising had in their creation. The students will then use this information to create their own advertisement for Shiseido cosmetics.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology © 2008 Visualizing Cultures