The Consumerist Manifesto
Advertising in Postmodern Times
Routledge – 1992 – 228 pages
Advertising is no longer on the defensive. It has survived the snobbery of the 50s, the conspiracy theories of the 60s and the semiology of the 70s to be embraced and apotheosised by the 80s.
The Consumerist Manifesto is the first book to examine the advertising process from within the agency itself, and from the wider perspective of advertising's dual relationship as both consumer and object, with contemporary cultural theory. Martin Davidson follows the creation of successful campaigns and explores how advertising has succeeded in setting the tone for even larger aspects of our material and personal lives.
With the impact of postmodernism and popular culture, and the subsequent collapse of the old anti-advertising critique, the books reveals how advertising came to be embraced as the idiom of the enterprise culture, and how it became central to the decades assault on traditional notions of political and cultural value. Martin Davidson explores the wider implications of advertising's dominance for cultural theory, art, anthropology and language.
Finally, Martin Davidson asks how this new critique will have to develop if the industry's new credibility is to be maintained.
`The Consumerist Manifesto is a timely and very useful summary of most of the key intellectual issues underlying the functions and methods of advertising.' - Financial Times