Friday April 30th, 2010

A Marketing Manual

no-logoAt Reason, Andrew Potter reads Naomi Klein’s battle cry on the 10th anniversary of its publication:

What are we to make of No Logo a decade on? It remains a passionate and ambitious snapshot of the newly globalized youth and consumer culture at the end of the 20th century. It is also an often infuriating work of agitprop that marries old Marxist prejudices about the market economy to a paranoid and conspiratorial account of the business of advertising.

If that was all there was to the book, it would be enough to dismiss it as a period piece, the journalistic equivalent to a box of old Polaroids. Sweatshops, the McLibel trial, Brent Spar…weren’t those the days? But that would be a mistake, since it would miss the way in which, in its quest to undermine the branded economy and expose the capitalist propaganda that motivates all advertising, No Logo inadvertently served as the most influential marketing manual of the decade.