New Times,
New Thinking.

  1. World
  2. Middle East
1 October 2012

Ikea Saudi Arabia airbrushes women from their catalogue

Spot the difference.

By Alex Hern

When Ikea launched this year’s catalogue in Saudi Arabia, they were apparently faced with a dialemma. They want to have a standard aesthetic across all the countries they operate in, but Saudi Arabia’s hyperconservative standards of morality may be offended by some of the content in the catalogue. The solution? Release a version of it, translated into arabic, with no women in. At all.

Some of the photos were merely swapped out. So this woman is replaced by a soft-looking sweater:

And this woman is replaced by a man:

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In others, they decided to just cut their losses and remove every person at once:

And in some, they actually went to the trouble of photoshopping out the women from the pictures:

The full catalogues can be seen here and here.

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