These vintage advertisements are from Beyond Belief, a book by art collector and former advertising executive Charles Saatchi, which brings together the most shocking advertising campaigns of the last century. From racism and sexism to dodgy health claims, nothing was out of bounds for the real-life Mad Men.
“In the middle of the last century, marketing men had few qualms about creating brutally offensive advertisements…It proved a grimly amusing task to find so many examples that I could collect together; they provide a clear insight into the world of the ‘Mad Men’ generation and the consumers they were addressing. Although many of the advertisements selected are alarming they present an important portrait of society in the 1940s and ‘50s.” – Charles Saatchi.
Misogynistic, racist, unscientific, dishonest and just plain bizarre, these ads demonstrate how our attitudes towards women, race, tobacco, personal hygiene and drugs have changed over the years.