In this signal work of history, Bancroft Prize winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist Lizabeth Cohen shows how the pursuit of prosperity after World War II. In charting the complex legacy of our “Consumers’ Republic” Lizabeth Cohen has written a bold, encompassing, and profoundly influential. Review of Lizabeth Cohen’s A Consumers’ Republic. By politics | Published: August 10, The United States of the twentieth century has often been.

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My library Help Advanced Book Search. Frankly, my brain hurts.

Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide.

This carried over into politics as well. Cohen makes some fascinating points about consumption and race. The citizen consumer model worked best within the context of a war against fascism, at a time when the United States was still lizabeh clearly bounded entity and broad political consensus was possible, a situation that probably cannot be replicated.

Beginning in Part II, “The Birth of a Consumers’ Republic,” Cohen documents how the citizen consumer’s “nemesis,” the “purchaser as citizen,” rose to prominence as the basis of what she calls the Consumers’ Republic. There was always a nicer suburb to move into, so suburbs started to reflect class hierarchies.

A Consumers’ Republic

They also drained money out of cities, which had hugely negative consequences for urban education and business. Built on the Johns Hopkins University Campus. Dec 24, Pages. The book is pages long and academic in nature which …more Addison, it’s been lizabegh few months since you asked but I’ll answer nonetheless just in case!

Review of Lizabeth Cohen’s A Consumers’ Republic.

To be fair, she does account for the many programs adopted to lessen the negative effects of these trends. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Chapter 4, which focuses more directly on the African American experience after the war, begins with a daring claim: Blacks in particular used the venue of the market as a means to exercise new powers as citizen consumers: Although this is a work of advanced scholarship, it is well within the reach of able high school students and would be a great example of clear, professional historical writing.

We are experiencing technical difficulties. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Marketers capitalized on racial and class differences by segmenting consumers and promoting goods that reinforced the differentiation of social groups. Cohen’s work is complete, and thorough, analyzing the United States as a whole as well as using the microcosm of New Jersey to give more specific evidence for her argument.

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In this signal work of history, Bancroft Prize winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist Lizabeth Cohen shows how the pursuit of prosperity after World War II fueled our pervasive consumer mentality and transformed American life.

Chapter 6 takes a fascinating look at the rise of the shopping mall in the late s. In particular, women and African American g Argues that Keynesian-paradigms of thought transcended the New Deal brain-trusters and was adopted by grassroots consumers. Not all of this expansion was good, as the suburbs, and their local shops and school systems, fostered more division both between races and between ethnic classes.

The Eisenhower campaign specifically made use of marketing techniques, a process which grew to the situation we have today, where many people feel that political candidates are just clamoring for votes through marketing techniques.

Inequality in Mass Suburbia. Project MUSE Mission Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide. It was certainly readable, but not for my taste.

Advertising became a science as companies learned to target particular demographic groups for their products. Return to Book Page. It also explains how it is that wealthier suburbs enjoy lower tax rates and better services, particularly education, than others lower on the socioeconomic scale. Using America as the example, you can see how we went from the tough industrial workhouses to the smart, office based service industry that now dominates employment.

Dec 08, David Ross rated it really liked it. A Consumer’s Republic deals with the underlying social and cultural formations that nurture the political and administrative policies that promote mass consumption. I shopped for immediate needs and distant contingencies. However, having finished this yesterday, I’m happy I persevered.

Please try rephblic later. In the postwar era a “purchaser as citizen” ideal creatively combined personal satisfaction with patriotism because, the argument ran, consumerism energized the economy, illustrated social mobility, and demonstrated American superiority on the international scene. In the early twentieth century, however, as suffrage waxed more universal and markets were flooded with goods made for the masses, citizenship took on a different meaning.

Trumpeted as a means to promote the general welfare, mass consumption quickly outgrew its economic objectives and became synonymous with patriotism, soci In this signal work of history, Bancroft Comsumers winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist Lizabeth Cohen shows how the pursuit of prosperity after World War II fueled our pervasive consumer mentality and transformed American life.

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One particularly effective illustration shows the evolution of advertising in Ebony magazine from the s to the s, as white-owned haircare manufactures realized that 1 blacks were a market and 2 that black people were a different market. May 29, Tim rated it it was amazing. The consumers’ republic refers to the intersection of an economy, culture and politics “built around the promises of mass consumption, both in terms of material life and the more idealistic goals of freedom, democracy, and equality.

They gradually transition from a white model demonstrating hair treatment lotion to a black republc advertising products related to ‘natural’ hair. In response, a growing political aim to aid in privatization and deregulation are justified as aiding the consumer and therefore the entire economy.

A Consumers’ Republic: The Politics of Mass Consumption in Postwar America

It would be an excellent reference and it makes a very powerful point that the US economy has been relentlessly dependent on consumer spending and necessarily on consumer debt. The republiv republic began to die in the s and s amid economic turbulence; even though people continued to buy more and more, the political aspect of their purchasing, the meaning they lizabetn given it, fell away, both because the economy no longer responded as Keynes promised and their aa became more purely self-focused and only tangently connected to the thought of improving the nation’s fortunes.

Trumpeted as a means to promote the general welfare, mass consumption quickly outgrew its economic objectives and became synonymous with patriotism, social equality, and the American Dream. The Vietnam War failed to motivate patriotic, responsible, citizen consumerism in the way that WWII did because by the s, the nation state paradigm was giving way to the global Empire of postmodern capitalism, and wealthy Americans had less in common with poor Americans than with their wealthy counterparts elsewhere.