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Word Count: 663
The SUV Phenomenon Coming from an affluent suburb I know first-hand that the number of SUVs people own has grown to a staggering figure I often wonder why all these stay-at-home mothers and businessmen so desperately need these enormous off-roading vehicles when their activities consist of commutes to and from grocery stores and office buildings In David Goeways essay Careful You May Run Out of Planet SUVs and the Exploitation of the American Myth Maasik and Solomon 105 I begin to view the connotative embodiment of the SUV from an alternative perspective He discusses at length the history of the automobile in conjunction with mans desire of independent travel beginning from the first automobiles and ending in the present with our super-sized SUVs 105-6 Throughout his essay he points out several contradictions especially evident in advertising surrounding the American ideology of the SUV He addresses advertisements for SUVs that display the vehicle amongst the gorgeous outdoors implying that the car is at one with nature As Goeway notes The SUV is anything but nature-friendly with its thirsty gasoline tank and lower emission standards106 Furthermore in proving the SUVs inharmonious relationship with nature we learn that automobiles must meet a fuel economy standard of 275 miles a gallon while SUVs are permitted to drop as low as 207 miles a gallon with some SUVs still falling short of the lenient standard 113 In Thomas Hines Whats In a Package he says Advertising leads consumers into temptation 71 This is evident when we look at current advertisements that target both genders Men see a commercial and immediately feel that if they had an SUV they would be rugged attractive and invincible An SUV shown traversing rugged terrain tells a man that he will discover a boundless frontier for his newfound strength When a woman sees a commercial for an SUV she sees the embodiment of her independence For example Goeway alludes to
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