How Has the Perception of Women Cigar Smoking Changed Over Time?

The perception of women cigar smoking has changed drastically over the years. In the past, smoking was seen as a socially acceptable practice, but now it is widely recognized as a major cause of cancer. A survey conducted in 1966 revealed that only 40% of Americans recognized smoking as a major cause of cancer, while 27% said it was a minor cause and a third said that science could not yet determine it. By 2001, this number had increased to 71%.It is important to assess whether the cigarette smoking habits of young male smokers have changed over time, as their numbers increased.

The analysis of the cigarette smoking habit of young male smokers over time revealed that the majority of new tobacco smokers were people who had never smoked cigarettes (23.3% of cigar smokers in 1993 compared to 55.2% of cigar smokers in 1999-2000). In addition, a slight decrease was revealed in the proportion of cigar smokers who had smoked cigarettes; an important finding that suggests that cigarette smokers are not overwhelmingly turning to cigars as a substitute for cigarettes. Tobacco use rates have generally declined over time. Current cigarette consumption was higher among men than among women. Most women smokers of this generation would have started smoking when they were young during the 1970s, when the promotion of images of women smoking (which appealed to both idealized constructions of femininity and independence) was enacted in the context of “second wave” feminism. Cigar smokers were about three times more likely than non-cigar smokers to believe that cigars are a safer alternative to cigarettes, and that perception didn't seem to change much over time.

Former or current cigarette smokers who smoke cigars have been shown to inhale more deeply than those who have never smoked, and it has been shown that the health risks are much greater with a deeper inhalation. Young men were much more likely than older men or women of any age to have experimented with cigars the year before the interview, but this trend seems to have slowed slightly since 1998. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) report states that “the dramatic increase in cigar consumption in the United States has occurred along with the increase in smoking-related promotional activities”. Greaves (Greaves, 199) argues that “the masculinity involved in smoking was a key part of the cultural symbolism that women smokers challenged during the 1920s in industrialized countries”.While just over one in 10 young women admitted to experimenting with cigarettes, fewer older women reported this type of experimentation. This study specifically looked at adults in Massachusetts to identify trends in tobacco use and to examine perceptions about health risks from tobacco use. The perception of women cigar smoking has changed drastically over time.

It is now widely recognized as a major cause of cancer and is no longer seen as socially acceptable. Cigar smokers are three times more likely than non-smokers to believe that cigars are a safer alternative to cigarettes, although this is not true. The FTC report states that there has been an increase in cigar consumption due to promotional activities, and young men are more likely than older men or women to experiment with cigars.