This frightening expos reveals how advertisers use what they know about consumers' inner desires and dreams to make sure they develop an addictive relationship to their products. Illustrations.This frightening expos reveals how advertisers use what they know about consumers' inner desires and dreams to make sure they develop an addictive relationship to their products. Illustrations.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 1999-10-25 No longer confined to 30-second TV spots and newspaper and magazine columns, advertisements now find their way into movie plots (as product placements) and high school lessons, onto municipal buses, sports scoreboards, clothing and even food. Kilbourne, best known for her documentary film work (Killing Us Softly; Pack of Lies), has extended her anti-advertising crusade into print in a profound work that is required reading for informed consumers. She adeptly illustrates that advertising encourages buyers to lavish affection on products rather than on other people, and pitches these trivialized relationships most fervently to girls and women. Worse, according to the author, addictive products are touted as outlets of expression and rebellion and are advertised to an increasingly younger demographic. She writes, "Advertising doesn't cause addictions. But... [it] contributes mightily to the climate of denial in which relationships flounder and addictions flourish." Drawing on a combination of psychology, feminist critique and media studies, Kilbourne cites numerous ads that downplay romantic commitment or healthy self-esteem in order to sell these qualities through products like backpacks or diet pills. She exposes the way advertisers take advantage of women's and girls' stifled feelings of rage and loss of control, and cause gender stereotypes to flourish. Likely to spark intense controversy, Kilbourne's passionate treatise is a wake-up call about the damaging effects of advertising in our media-saturated culture. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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