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Authentic (TM)


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Argues that brands are about culture as much as they are about economics

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction: Branding the Authentic 1. Branding Consumer Citizens Gender and the Emergence of Brand Culture 2. Branding the Postfeminist Self The Labor of Femininity 3. Branding Creativity Creative Cities, Street Art, and "Making Your Name Sing" 4. Branding Politics Shopping for Change? 5. Branding Religion "I'm Like Totally Saved" Conclusion: The Politics of Ambivalence Notes Index About the Author

About the Author

Sarah Banet-Weiser is Professor and Head of the Department of Media and Communications at the London School of Economics. She is the author of four books, including Authentic (TM): The Politics of Ambivalence in a Brand Culture (2012), which won the International Communication Association's Outstanding Book Award, The Most Beautiful Girl in the World: Beauty Pageants and National Identity (1999), Kids Rule! Nickelodeon and Consumer Citizenship (2007), and Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny (2018). She is the co-editor of Cable Visions: Television Beyond Broadcasting (2007) and Commodity Activism: Cultural Resistance in Neoliberal Times (2012), both available from NYU Press.


"This profound and powerful book is replete with perceptive insights and persuasive arguments. Authentic ' reveals how the pervasiveness of branding culture requires us to rethink our investments in authenticity and our understandings of citizenship and social membership. Banet-Weiser offers us the first fully theorized analysis of how the hegemony of branding culture and the eclipse of typographic culture by digital culture combine to make us fundamentally new kinds of social subjects."-George Lipsitz, author of Time Passages "We all search for spaces where we can express ourselves or find others we value, but what happens when all those spaces are already aligned by the self-interested productivity of brands? No one has followed those searches more attentively than Sarah Banet-Weiser. As inherited politics falters, Banet-Weiser's major new book is an indispensable guide to an ambivalent future."-Nick Couldry, author of Why Voice Matters: Culture and Politics After Neoliberalism "In this lively and penetrating analysis of the ubiquity and consequences of non-stop branding in the 21st century, Sarah Banet-Weiser pushes us to think beyond the false distinctions between consumer culture on the one hand and 'authenticity' on the other, and instead to contemplate what is at stake in living in branded cultures - especially for our very core identities and values. A stimulating, smart, and extremely timely book."-Susan J. Douglas, University of Michigan and author of The Rise of Enlightened Sexism

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