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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Thus the book could easily lose a hundred pages without losing any real content.

Argues that Keynesian-paradigms of thought transcended the Consumrrs Deal consumerss and was adopted by grassroots consumers. The depiction of cosumers, cultural landscape is indeed captivating.

Target Marketing by design stratifies by gender and race. Lizabeth Cohen made her name with the New Deal, but it is ljzabeth is by far the superior work, though I’m quite biased. View freely repulic titles: 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, democrac Cohen’s thesis–and this is very much a thesis driven book, sometimes to its determent–is that in the years since World War II, the United States is best understood as a “consumers’ republic,” and that, for the most part, that has operated to the detriment of political citizenship.

In the New Deal and World War II, millions of American consumers had seen their rights as individual consumers as essential to the promotion of the “general good. The next section is on how African Americans utilized their power as consumers to force the stores that served them to also hire them as more than janitors, etc.

The book starts off talking a little bit about the rise of consumer protection laws in the progressive era, but then argues that consumer cpnsumers became political in the language of the new deal area culminating in the political mobilization of women’s social groups in the 30’s to utilize their power as consumers to protect their families via laws designed to control unfair pricing, etc and then by union workers to boycott stores that didn’t have union workers.


She notes the roles of women as citizen consumers and the difficult issues facing African-Americans as they sought places as both citizens and consumers. I was bigger than these sums.

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

View all 5 comments. While these anecdotes are interesting, they detract from the work and fail to live up to the scope of the rest of the material. This is a well-researched, clearly written, and fascinating book that I luzabeth come back to over and over again.

Jun 24, Ross rated it liked it. She also notes how successful and positive the consumer advocacy movement has been, especially under Ralph Nader in the ‘s.

However, the nuance of her work, especially in her attention to the gender and racial inequalities consumdrs post-war consumption patterns, illuminates a fundamental shift in what it means to be an American citizen and what constitutes “rights” beyond the framers’ intent. In Part IV, “The Political Culture of Mass Consumption,” Cohen concludes by showing how marketing trends and national politics reinforced and amplified the postwar trends of segmentation; advertisers and politicians started to target narrowly defined social groups.

The answer for the time period of this book 50’s to 70’s seems to be yes. Cohen’s focus is on consumption, citizenship, and suburbanization. Suburbanization is a huge part of Cohen’s argument.

Yet despite undeniable successes and unprecedented affluence, mass consumption also fostered economic inequality and the fracturing of society along gender, class, and racial lines.

There are no discussion topics on this book yet. In short, repjblic is an extension of Keynesian policies.

Review of Lizabeth Cohen’s A Consumers’ Republic.

Consumerism and citizenship became tightly entwined concepts because consuming was seen as so crucial to keeping the postwar boom going. Knopf, pp. Account Options Sign in.

Her chapter on consumer cultures and the shifts from mass market to segmented markets, and how producers grab a segment and begin to mold it via producing for it is fascinating.

No trivia or quizzes yet. Jul 09, Daniel rated it really liked it. Someone less exhausted and more interested in this era would give it a higher rating, but this is the last book after months of consuemrs for comprehensive exams and I was so done with it halfway through.


A Consumers’ Republic by Lizabeth Cohen | : Books

My library Help Advanced Book Search. Built on the Thematic Theme Framework.

Americans of all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds accepted the basic premise of the CR: A few times I even wanted to put the book down and pick up a less academic book – perhaps some fiction – to give my eyes and brain a break. Yet despite undeniable successes and unprecedented affluence, mass consumption also fostered economic inequality and the fracturing of society along gender, class, and racial lines.

Interesting but very dense, strategically organized in kind of an odd way, and damn is that conclusion depressing. Forged from a partnership between a university press and a library, Project MUSE is a trusted part of the academic and scholarly community it serves.

The first historical account to examine closely the social world of postwar consumerism and the politics that were so tightly enmeshed with it. Cohen’s argument can be broadly generalized to say that post-war economic policies and consumer spending habits led Americans to conceive of themselves more as consumers than politically-minded citizens. In A C What is the meaning of citizenship?

Review of Lizabeth Cohen’s A Consumers’ Republic.

A very exhaustive, well researched history of America’s post war consumer explosion. She identifies a chronological sequence of ideal types that she believes characterize the political economy of specific eras. It’s a great source, except that most readers will probably not learn much that they didn’t already know. Oct 28, Samuel rated it liked it. Concentrating on housing, roads, schools, shopping centers, and tax policies, Cohen deftly reconstructs the growth and social stratification of postwar suburbs in fascinating detail.

Chapters on suburbanization and shopping centers are especially good, as is market and political segmentation. It is sobering history written clearly and directly. Jul 28, Mark rated it really liked it. As activists, they forced issues of Civil Rights onto businesses that would discriminate. What is the meaning of citizenship?