Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture: Advertising's Impact on American Character and Society

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9780742527249: Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture: Advertising's Impact on American Character and Society
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Expanded and updated from the successful first edition, Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture, second edition is an engaging cultural studies critique of advertising and its impacts on American society. Arthur Asa Berger looks at marketing strategies, sex and advertising, consumer culture, political advertising, and communication theory and process to give an accessible overview of advertising in America. The new edition features additions to flesh out earlier topics as well as new theoretical material. New discussions include classified advertising, advertising agencies in the recent economy, postmodern perspectives on advertising, new consumer cultures, metaphor and metonymy, product placement, and the 2002 California campaign for governor. A new chapter raises questions about prescription drug advertising and advertising to children.

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About the Author:

Arthur Asa Berger is professor emeritus of broadcast and electronic communication arts at San Francisco State University.

Review:

Well-written, down-to-earth, accessible, and rich in useful information. (Contemporary Sociology)

In Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture, Arthur Asa Berger strikes the raw nerve of American advertising. As in his many other cultural commentaries, Berger drives his point home with wit, wisdom, and wide-ranging examples, offering powerful inoculation against the worst excesses of today's climate of greed and commodification. (Carol Wilder)

Succeeds in introducing a way to study advertising in an interesting, lively, and thought-provoking package. An excellent, accessible textbook for students who are interested in advertising, as well as students in communication, business, and sociology. . . . I would feel comfortable using this text in courses with freshmen through seniors. (Jonathan Schroeder)

A well-written, concise introduction to advertising communication. (Discourse & Society)

Arthur Asa Berger is that rare combination of astute, deep, and fun. His insights into the psychology, sociology, economics, and political implications of advertising and pop culture, in a lively, readable form, are a must for any student of popular culture. (Rheingold, Howard)

Arthur Asa Berger's Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture provides a multifaceted study of advertising that demonstrates its importance for the economy, politics, social life, and individual identities. Skillfully employing cultural, communications, and social theory, Berger brilliantly illuminates the multiple functions of advertising in today's consumer culture. (Kellner, Douglas)

It was pure pleasure reading Arthur Asa Berger's esoteric deconstruction of the Macintosh '1984' commercial. I was part of this commercial's development and had no idea we were making semiotic history. Only a person of Berger's intellect and insight could have figured it all out as he has. (Fred Goldberg)

Deceptively simple, and powerfully argued, Berger's little training manual describes the rationale, techniques, and application of cultural criticism of advertising and represents another assault on the limited-effects school that has so dominated--and some would argue stymied--American mass communication theory and study. (Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly)

Berger offers an intriguing analysis of advertising and its place in society. This book is an excellent introduction for anyone interested in learning about advertising. Undergraduate students would find the book an easy-to-use reference, while graduate students might use it best as a starting point for more in-depth research. Scholars, too, may find value in the text for the research questions posed throughout. Overall, the book is an informative, enjoyable read. Highly recommended. (Choice)

Pick up the new paperback edition.... It's a good, informative book about sex and advertising and other cool subjects, including new material on product placement. (Advertising Age)

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