• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of tobcontTobacco ControlVisit this articleSubmit a manuscriptReceive email alertsContact usBMJ
Tob Control. Jun 2004; 13(2): 115–120.
PMCID: PMC1747877

Smoking, social class, and gender: what can public health learn from the tobacco industry about disparities in smoking?

Abstract

Objective: To discover how the tobacco industry considers social class and gender in its efforts to market cigarettes in the USA, particularly to socially disadvantaged young women.

Methods: A systematic on-line search of tobacco industry documents using selected keywords was conducted, and epidemiological data on smoking rates reviewed.

Results: The two largest cigarette manufacturers in the USA consider "working class" young adults to be a critical market segment to promote growth of key brands. Through their own market research, these companies discovered that socially disadvantaged young women do not necessarily desire a "feminine" cigarette brand.

Conclusions: Considering the tobacco industry's efforts, alongside the persistent and growing disparities in cigarette smoking by social class, and the narrowing of differences in smoking by gender, it is concluded that additional tobacco control resources ought to be directed toward working class women.

Full Text

The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (107K).

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Voorhees Carolyn C, Schreiber George B, Schumann Barbara C, Biro Frank, Crawford Patricia B. Early predictors of daily smoking in young women: the national heart, lung, and blood institute growth and health study. Prev Med. 2002 Jun;34(6):616–624. [PubMed]
  • Pierce JP, Fiore MC, Novotny TE, Hatziandreu EJ, Davis RM. Trends in cigarette smoking in the United States. Educational differences are increasing. JAMA. 1989 Jan 6;261(1):56–60. [PubMed]
  • Cavelaars AE, Kunst AE, Geurts JJ, Crialesi R, Grötvedt L, Helmert U, Lahelma E, Lundberg O, Matheson J, Mielck A, et al. Educational differences in smoking: international comparison. BMJ. 2000 Apr 22;320(7242):1102–1107. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Sorensen Glorian, Barbeau Elizabeth, Hunt Mary Kay, Emmons Karen. Reducing social disparities in tobacco use: a social-contextual model for reducing tobacco use among blue-collar workers. Am J Public Health. 2004 Feb;94(2):230–239. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Bang KM, Kim JH. Prevalence of cigarette smoking by occupation and industry in the United States. Am J Ind Med. 2001 Sep;40(3):233–239. [PubMed]
  • Covey LS, Zang EA, Wynder EL. Cigarette smoking and occupational status: 1977 to 1990. Am J Public Health. 1992 Sep;82(9):1230–1234. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Ling Pamela M, Glantz Stanton A. Using tobacco-industry marketing research to design more effective tobacco-control campaigns. JAMA. 2002 Jun 12;287(22):2983–2989. [PubMed]
  • Ling Pamela M, Glantz Stanton A. Why and how the tobacco industry sells cigarettes to young adults: evidence from industry documents. Am J Public Health. 2002 Jun;92(6):908–916. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Changes in the cigarette brand preferences of adolescent smokers--United States, 1989-1993. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 1994 Aug 19;43(32):577–581. [PubMed]
  • Balbach ED, Gasior RJ, Barbeau EM. Tobacco industry documents: comparing the Minnesota Depository and internet access. Tob Control. 2002 Mar;11(1):68–72. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Malone RE, Balbach ED. Tobacco industry documents: treasure trove or quagmire? Tob Control. 2000 Sep;9(3):334–338. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Balbach Edith D, Gasior Rebecca J, Barbeau Elizabeth M. R.J. Reynolds' targeting of African Americans: 1988-2000. Am J Public Health. 2003 May;93(5):822–827. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Amos A, Haglund M. From social taboo to "torch of freedom": the marketing of cigarettes to women. Tob Control. 2000 Mar;9(1):3–8. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Graham H. Women's smoking and family health. Soc Sci Med. 1987;25(1):47–56. [PubMed]
  • Young D, Banwell CL. Rites of passage: smoking and the construction of social identity. Drug Alcohol Rev. 1993;12(4):377–385. [PubMed]
  • Sepe Edward, Ling Pamela M, Glantz Stanton A. Smooth moves: bar and nightclub tobacco promotions that target young adults. Am J Public Health. 2002 Mar;92(3):414–419. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Sepe Edward, Glantz Stanton A. Bar and club tobacco promotions in the alternative press: targeting young adults. Am J Public Health. 2002 Jan;92(1):75–78. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Barbeau E, Yaus K, McLellan D, Levenstein C, Youngstrom R, Siqueira E, Sorensen G. Organized labor, public health, and tobacco control policy: a dialogue toward action. New Solut. 2001;11(2):121–139. [PubMed]
  • Gritz ER, Thompson B, Emmons K, Ockene JK, McLerran DF, Nielsen IR. Gender differences among smokers and quitters in the Working Well Trial. Prev Med. 1998 Jul-Aug;27(4):553–561. [PubMed]
  • Wechsler H, Rigotti NA, Gledhill-Hoyt J, Lee H. Increased levels of cigarette use among college students: a cause for national concern. JAMA. 1998 Nov 18;280(19):1673–1678. [PubMed]
  • Rigotti NA, Lee JE, Wechsler H. US college students' use of tobacco products: results of a national survey. JAMA. 2000 Aug 9;284(6):699–705. [PubMed]
  • Yerger VB, Malone RE. African American leadership groups: smoking with the enemy. Tob Control. 2002 Dec;11(4):336–345. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Tobacco Control are provided here courtesy of BMJ Group

Formats:

Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...

Links

  • MedGen
    MedGen
    Related information in MedGen
  • PubMed
    PubMed
    PubMed citations for these articles

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...