Slogans promote information instantly. Messages.

Bertolt Brecht used slogans in his modernist drama directions. Slogans are used in television adverts and in advertising in general. They are short, sharp deliveries of information. Plus they stick in your head! Comedians use this abrupt style of language.

There is a difference between a slogan and a catchphrase. The slogan is a purposely-phrased utterance, designed to catch the attention of the audience. Visually or verbally slogans are not used in the vernacular, the everyday conversations but catchphrases are. Catchphrases relate to the knowledge of the audience. If a person does not know the 'history' of the slogan then it becomes irrelevant.

Its like saying 'doh!' to someone who has never watched or heard of The Simpsons. Sometimes a catchphrase can be popular without a person having to know about the cultural context, or origins. This shows significant popularity!

Slogans also grace car bumper stickers, tattoos, t-shirts, walls and just about any surface that can be drawn upon. The ritual of wearing t-shirts with a slogan on it or etching a slogan onto a surface is a phenomenon. Cultural indicators such as a slogan connote meaning and understanding. The symbolism of the message reflects a set of values and ideas that are incorporated into the cultural meaning of the message/symbol/slogan.

For example, wearing a shirt with Britney Spears written glamorously on it suggests to those looking at you that you may like Britney Spears. As with signifiers the whole context has to be read and therefore as one would read a book the wearing and adaptation of this shirt can be totally changed if worn 'out' of context. Play and pastiche, the building blocks of postmodernism form a tongue in cheek attitude.

Madonna was pictured wearing Britney's name across her bosom. This has been hailed by some critics to be a nice gesture by the Queen of Pop. Signifying a liking and more importantly approval to Britney’s performances and productions. To others it is seen as an attack. Kitsch. These shirts and the practice of wearing them highlights the hegemonic trend within the fashion worlds. With cold sober thinking it can be just merely wearing someone else’s ideas on a piece of overpriced material. Why wear it unless you have scrawled a message yourself reflecting the individual?

Slo"gan (?), n. [Gael. sluagh-ghairm, i.e., an army cry; sluagh army + gairm a call, calling.]

The war cry, or gathering word, of a Highland clan in Scotland; hence, any rallying cry.

Sir W. Scott.


© Webster 1913.

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