The Benefits of Cigarettes Exploratory Research

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This article is part of the Tobacco portal on Sourcewatch funded from 2006 - 2009 by the American Legacy Foundation.

The Benefits of Cigarettes Exploratory Research

This fascinating report prepared for R.J. Reynolds explores the perceived "benefits" of smoking to the smoker. It was produced to help RJR more thoroughly exploit the inner psychological needs of smokers in cigarette advertising and promotions.

The document explores how and why young people start to smoke, and the value the imagery of smoking has to young people:

Smoking provides a highly visible display of rebellion against social, and especially parental, pressures. It thus creates an image of maturity and independence to which many young adults, insecure in their immaturity, would aspire...

...The imagery of smoking can provide many young adults with a useful form of social self expression, that is perceived to smooth the way to peer acceptance...

It also discusses the masculine and feminine imagery of cigarettes:

Non-filter brands are particularly able to support masculine imagery, in that they provide a series of especially challenging tests to the smoker's virility--his ability to withstand the product's strength, its occasional painful tendency to tear skin from the lip, and the distasteful strands of tobacco it may deposit in his mouth...

The report also seeks to find and pinpoint ways to exploit smokers' health fears:

Some smokers have been strongly alarmed by the extensive publicity concerning alleged health hazards of smoking, to the extent that they seek not merely to moderate their smoking but to eliminate entirely the "danger" that it may present. Such a smoker has two options. Firstly, he may simply cease smoking altogether...His second option is to seek a cigarette which he perceives to reduce the alleged health risks to an acceptable -- minimal -- level...Such a brand provides the consoling sense that the smoker has eliminated the risks of smoking by 'quitting,' while continuing to engage in ritualized behaviors associated with cigarettes...

Title The Benefits of Cigarettes. Exploratory Research.
Date 19810800
Bates 503972013/2063
Pages 51