The New Mainstream: How the Multicultural Consumer Is Transforming American Business

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9780060584658: The New Mainstream: How the Multicultural Consumer Is Transforming American Business

An economic revolution is transforming America. It's called The New Mainstream.

The New Mainstream explains how Americans will eat, work, play, learn, and spend money in the twenty-first century -- and why any organization that ignores the lessons of the New Mainstream is doomed to fail.

In The New Mainstream, Guy Garcia offers us both a wake-up call and a road map to the new multicultural reality in America. The New Mainstream is a corporate survival guide for the uncharted markets of the twenty-first century as well as an intellectual toolkit for anyone hoping to get a handle on -- or get ahead of -- the demographic and marketing trends of today's increasingly diverse global society.

Somewhere between the moment when salsa replaced ketchup as the nation's most popular condiment and the rise of a pugnacious white rapper named Eminem to a top-selling recording artist, America changed for good.

The change was both subtle and seismic. The change was demographic and social, cutting across corporations and organizations, and putting a multicultural spin on everything from business and politics to entertainment and technology. Mainstream America, the way we knew it, was gone for good. But what has replaced it?

The New Mainstream is the most profitable sector of the U.S. economy, and it will be the one to have the deepest impact on the very nature of what it means to be an American.

Led by the growing statistical and buying power of blacks, Latinos, and Asians, the New Mainstream is the loose coalition of minorities that have been forced to forge their own identity outside the Old Mainstream -- even as they use and consume mass-media and mass-produced products targeted to the general public. This new consumer economy is transforming how products and services are developed, marketed, and bought. And by tapping the core values that have helped to make the United States the world's most powerful country, the multicultural consumer is also America's best hope for the future.

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About the Author:

Guy Garcia was a staff writer at Time magazine for thirteen years. The author of Skin Deep and Obsidian Sky, he is also the founding editor of the urban website TotalNewYork.com. More recently, he has worked on the development of AOL Latin America, AOL International, and AOL Music.

From Publishers Weekly:

Garcia marshals experience as a journalist (13 years at Time), novelist (Obsidian Sky) and multimedia entrepreneur to make "the business case for diversity": "Simply put, diversity breeds money." Those who fail to heed "the multicultural gospel" risk marginalization by the New Mainstream, a dynamic fusion of the "creative class," non-European immigrants and native-born American consumers with rapidly changing tastes and habits. At times, Garcia risks reducing culture to market forces and people to consumers ("for the new multicultural consumer, making and spending money is nothing less than a sacred, life-affirming act"). However, he works enough skepticism and detail into his argument to avoid flattening himself with it, mobilizing an impressively broad knowledge of cultures—popular, folk and high—and a lively sense of history. He warns that "ethnocentric nativism" and xenophobic policies, whether fueled by economic, cultural or terror-driven fears, can only damage the American corporation and nation. Garcia is at his best juggling a diverse range of examples of U.S. multiculturalism—Walt Whitman, 50 Cent, Octavio Paz, Shakira and Craig's List, to name a few—to make the argument that diversity is, more than ever, the dynamo driving American capitalism, and businesses had best take heed.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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