Media & Consumer Capitalism
Rene Descartes, the 17th century French philosopher once said, “I think, therefore I am.” In today’s context it may be more like, I buy therefore I am. Orchestrated wants driven by sophisticated advertising techniques have created a culture of consumption. Appetites for the latest hot thing are engineered. Media campaigns sell cool and sexy. Marketing is key. Data are collected. People are profiled, then targeted. Cell phones. Have to get the latest one with all new features, faster processor and design. We can’t be left behind. More sales means more profits. The capitalist economic system is predicated on making money and barely considers the environmental effects down the road. That’s somebody else’s problem. In the U.S., consumerism is connected to ideology. Freedom is equated with the ability to buy things. But the pattern of endless consumption is not sustainable.
Justin Lewis is Professor of Communication at the School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies, and Dean of Research for the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Cardiff University in the UK. He has written widely about media, culture and politics. His books include Constructing Public Opinion, Shoot First and Ask Questions Later, Climate Change and the Media, The World of 24 Hour News, and Beyond Consumer Capitalism.
Gerald Iversen –
I was so engaged by this presentation that I added it to my “Simple Living Works! Recommends” Literacy Service at http://simpleliving.startlogic.com/indexoth.php?place=archives/Literacy.php
I heard Justin’s lecture he gave at Smith College while on a road trip yesterday. Honestly, I was blown away by his clear and brilliant presentation. His words about the gradual collapse of our consumerist system so resonated. He is a sage, a still small voice in the desert we need to hear or else we are on a road to more global and environmental pain, individual loneliness and exhaustion, and more ills. Thank you Justin. Your words speak much truth, ultimately from a place of love for humankind.
Excellent lecture! Information on the true cost of goods and the true cost to society.
Geno Rodriguez –
One of the best speakers I have heard. Clear and succinct. Valuable information that is so missing in our lives. Every student (and retiree) should get a copy of this broadcast.In depth and clearly presented. No pablum or opinionated vapidness.