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No logo. Economia globale e nuova contestazione PDF, ePub eBook


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Title: No logo. Economia globale e nuova contestazione
Author: Naomi Klein
Publisher: Published 2002 by Baldini&Castoldi (first published 1999)
ISBN: 9788884902542
Status : FREE Rating :
4.6 out of 5

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In the last decade, No Logo has become a cultural manifesto for the critics of unfettered capitalism worldwide. As the world faces a second economic depression, No Logo's analysis of our corporate and branded world is as timely and powerful as ever. Equal parts cultural analysis, political manifesto, mall-rat memoir, and journalistic exposé, No Logo is the first book to put In the last decade, No Logo has become a cultural manifesto for the critics of unfettered capitalism worldwide. As the world faces a second economic depression, No Logo's analysis of our corporate and branded world is as timely and powerful as ever. Equal parts cultural analysis, political manifesto, mall-rat memoir, and journalistic exposé, No Logo is the first book to put the new resistance into pop-historical and clear economic perspective. It tells a story of rebellion and self-determination in the face of our new branded world.

30 review for No logo. Economia globale e nuova contestazione

  1. 4 out of 5

    Shelly

    This book for me really brings the phrase "ignorance is bliss" to life. No, I do not want to support a mega, multi-billion dollar operation that ships its jobs over-seas so that it can pay pennies (if that) on the dollar for labor. And low wages aren't the worst of what's offered to the Vietnamese, Taiwanese, Chinese workers etc.(usually women) who wove together my Gap top and glued the sole onto my favorite old school Nikes. "Hey! Check out my new kicks! I'm keeping it real, yo!" But then, what This book for me really brings the phrase "ignorance is bliss" to life. No, I do not want to support a mega, multi-billion dollar operation that ships its jobs over-seas so that it can pay pennies (if that) on the dollar for labor. And low wages aren't the worst of what's offered to the Vietnamese, Taiwanese, Chinese workers etc.(usually women) who wove together my Gap top and glued the sole onto my favorite old school Nikes. "Hey! Check out my new kicks! I'm keeping it real, yo!" But then, what the fuck am I gonna do? Becoming politically and socially aware takes effort. And I'm lazy. Still, just like when I go to spend money I don't have on something I don't need I hear my nagging boyfriend's voice in the back of my head saying "You don't need another pair of jeans," now that I've read this book I'll be more conscious of where the item was made and what that means to me. "No Logo," much like "The Jungle" and "Fast Food Nation" is less about the end result (i.e. finger in the can of beans or 16 year old factory worker who isn't allowed to take a break to change her tampon and to ensure that her "monthly gift" doesn't interfere with production her pay comes every 28 days {just like her Aunt Flo} and is dependent on her ability to either stave off bleeding all together or just sit and bleed in her clothes like a good little worker) and more about how the decisions various corporations make to skimp on labor (i.e. people) affects that corporation's local workforce and, ultimately, the global economy. What really gets my panties in a wad in this book (and in general) is the fact that the money these heroes save (The Gap, Nike, Levi's, Apple--your usual suspects) on production costs goes into constructing their "brand". What Klein emphasizes throughout the book is that these days it's no longer about what you sell, but how you sell it that brings in the big bucks. So fuck you Mr. and Mrs. American Worker. We don't give a shit how you're gonna make a life for yourself. We've got some ipods and iphones to sell. We need glitz, gloss, gimmicks and cool so that our profits can soar and our stockholders can continue to afford high priced (male) hookers--and those things don't come cheap. Another depressingly shitty aspect to this idea that profits should promote brand over worker is the fact that most American corporations not only offer low wages with no benefits, but often--even in times of profit-- lay off workers to keep a steady stream of income flowing into the marketing department. Hooray! Now we can get Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Mohammed Ali and that hot Russian chick that plays tennis for that new G campaign! Gatorade is so 2006! You have to evolve to stay ahead in THIS game. Guh! It's all so vomit inducing. And frustrating. And aggravating. And I just feel so helpless to do anything about it. Plus, Old Navy jeans are fucking cheap and I'm a temp for Apple so they're all I can afford. Besides, isn't turning a blind eye The American Way? Three cheers for denial! :(

  2. 5 out of 5

    Trevor

    I’ve been meaning to read this for years, and have only now gotten around to it. Her Shock Doctrine was one of the most important books I’ve read in years, so there really has been no excuse for leaving this one quite so long. A while ago I read Marx’s Capital and one of the things I thought while reading the horror stories of Victorian labour practices was just how lucky we are today that trade unions have made sure capitalism couldn’t get away with such disgusting practices – because I’ve alwa I’ve been meaning to read this for years, and have only now gotten around to it. Her Shock Doctrine was one of the most important books I’ve read in years, so there really has been no excuse for leaving this one quite so long. A while ago I read Marx’s Capital and one of the things I thought while reading the horror stories of Victorian labour practices was just how lucky we are today that trade unions have made sure capitalism couldn’t get away with such disgusting practices – because I’ve always known that capitalism can only maintain a human face when it is forced to. Well, this book makes it all too clear that the monstrous face of capitalism has never really disappeared. All of the standard stories/lies about how gross exploitation is the price poor nations have to pay for economic development are exploded here. The countries that receive factories as a kind of gift from multinational corporations are not ‘developing’ in any sense that we might like to imagine that might make us feel a little better about the horror they experience. The factories are kept isolated from local and international labour laws, the conditions the workers live under provide wages that are below subsistence and if they try to do anything about it they are killed. The whole thing is an exercise in ‘plausible deniability’ – corporations in the ‘liquid modern world’ don’t produce anything any longer. Everything is subcontracted out, so that brands today only put their names on products, rather than actually produce them. That means that they can pretend they are not responsible for the gross violations of basic human rights done to produce the products they name and sell. In part this book was somewhat disheartening. It is about 15 years since this book was written and if anything things today are infinitely worse. The anti-slavery campaigns around sweatshop conditions too often seem to be only about sating the consciences of western consumers who still define themselves by the brand names they wear on bodies. Meanwhile, the system is rotten to the core. It isn’t at all clear how it can be ‘fixed’ since these issues are global and there is no global democracy that allows ‘citizens’ to have a voice though regulation. Campaigns invariably are about reducing us to ‘customers’ who should use their ‘buying power’ to bring about change – but this is totally ineffective and a huge step back. If you get to choose, be a citizen rather than a customer every day. Given that it isn’t clear how we will be allowed to be global citizens and that the global is dominated by pirates and thieves, the only alternative seems to be to tear the entire edifice down. The idea that we should believe in the ‘self-regulation’ by global corporations, that this is going to suddenly become a reasonable option would be almost funny, except of course it is not – you know, we are talking about corporations like Coke that have been proven to kill union organisers across the world – and we are expected to believe they are going to suddenly self-regulate to protect the rights of their employees. If you drink any of their products you are endorsing murder – simple as that. We live in a dystopia worse than the worst of those imagined by our most creative writers. Where corporations are destroying the basis upon which we can sustain human life on this planet while apologists like Hans Roslin puts everything on a logarithmic scale to lie that things are getting all so much better. Perhaps one day we will awaken and force our societies to be more humane, focus on protecting the planet instead of turning it to ashes and operate under the simplest of moral maxims – that a harm to one is a harm to all – but then again, perhaps we will just go on buying Nikes, Apple, McDonald’s hamburgers and other poisons that kill us and our planet.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joseph

    No Logo: No Space, No Choice, No Jobs by Naomi Klein is an examination of the change from products to branding and the results that has had on the population. Klein is a writer, journalist, and film maker. She writes a syndicated column for The Nation and The Guardian, and covered the Iraq war for Harper’s. I read this book shortly after Shock Doctrine and recognized quite a difference in writing style. Shock Doctrine was a fast paced read for non-fiction while No Logo reads much more like a sch No Logo: No Space, No Choice, No Jobs by Naomi Klein is an examination of the change from products to branding and the results that has had on the population. Klein is a writer, journalist, and film maker. She writes a syndicated column for The Nation and The Guardian, and covered the Iraq war for Harper’s. I read this book shortly after Shock Doctrine and recognized quite a difference in writing style. Shock Doctrine was a fast paced read for non-fiction while No Logo reads much more like a scholarly thesis. It is fact filled and so well documented that it slows the reading pace down. This is a book you read for information not simply enjoyment. Also know that even the updated book was released in 2002 so some of the technology is no longer as relevant. I remember when brands represented a product and a reputation. Growing up Schwinn was a quality bicycle. When you bought a Schwinn bike you knew you were buying a quality product. Today the brand Schwinn still lives, the name bought and sold a few times, and now Schwinns are sold in the toy department at Wal-Mart. They are disposable bikes. Cheap to buy and expensive to repair. I work as a bike mechanic and I noticed many things that Klein has brought up in No Logos. There is still brand loyalty in the bicycle industry, but in reality it is pretty meaningless. If your bicycle is an aluminum Trek, Specialized, Fuji, or other higher end brand, the frame was made by Giant, also a bicycle company. If you bike is carbon fiber it came from one of three plants in China or Taiwan. Simply put, brand loyalty has little to do with the actual product. You are buying an image, not a product. This happens in other industries too. Years ago a friend was showing me his Ford Probe. “Look at this.” he said pointing to the valve cover. There was a Ford emblem held in place with two screws. He proceeded to remove the screws and Ford emblem to reveal MAZDA stamped into valve cover underneath. Klein spends a great deal of words on branding and brand identity and how it has changed over the years. Before you made a product, sold it, developed a reputation, and that became the brand. Now you create a brand and hype and sub-contract out for a product. Microsoft's Redmond campus was contracted out. A company took over the cafeteria, another took over cd manufacturing, essentially all but the core operations were contracted out. Klein also brings up people that find trends to sell to corporations. People who go out and look for the newest hipster trends and sell those ideas. Some corporations have quit going after counterfeit merchandise especially in the inner city. The inner city/rap/urban culture is cool and even if the item is counterfeit, the right person wearing it will more than make up for the counterfeit by becoming an ad. Graffiti artists tearing up a corporations ads? Don’t fight back, join in. Chrysler Neon used to have a friendly little ad with “Hi” written over the top of the friendly little car. Chrysler, went ahead and pre-vandalized their bill boards with a fake sprayed “p” after the “Hi” the Neon was now made “Hip” apparently by the cool graffiti artists. Also, interesting was a paragraph about the NAACP petitioning cigarette companies into putting more blacks into their ads in 1960. Thirty years later a church group complained that cigarette companies were exploiting black poverty in the inner city. I grew up in Cleveland, which was at the time a very segregated city. My public library was on the other side of the de facto border. Even back in the 1970s, as a child, I noticed the change when crossing that border: the cigarette and malt liquor billboards with black models were everywhere. The billboards were very colorful, very stereotypical, and today would be seen as racist. Those were only a few examples in the book. Mega-Mergers of the 1980s and 1990s and the growth of Wal-Mart and Blockbuster bring more change to the American markets. Throughout this book one thought came into my mind. If all corporations had a cap on advertising budgets, how much cheaper would things be at the grocery store? There is an almost unimaginable amount of money spent on advertising. Again, Klein produces a scholarly study on brands, mergers, ads, sweat shops, advertising in schools, and all the tricks corporations use to become kings of the consumer markets. No Logo can be a bit dry reading at times, but this book clearly is the foundation of her later work. In the 1990s we celebrated capitalism and consumerism destroying communism and state planned economies. Today it seems capitalism and consumerism are also trying to destroy itself. A very informative and well researched book.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ben

    Ok ok ok, I know the hype surrounding this book. Your dreddy activist friend keeps recommending this to you. That dirty hippy that is a total vagabond is doing the same. Well, what sold me on this book was an image taken from a busy street with all of the logo's removed using Photoshop. Striking. And the book is long, interesting and at times redundant. Naomi Klein is hot, first of all, but mainly she's right. Advertising ruined the planet. Basically. We could argue that human desire and the wea Ok ok ok, I know the hype surrounding this book. Your dreddy activist friend keeps recommending this to you. That dirty hippy that is a total vagabond is doing the same. Well, what sold me on this book was an image taken from a busy street with all of the logo's removed using Photoshop. Striking. And the book is long, interesting and at times redundant. Naomi Klein is hot, first of all, but mainly she's right. Advertising ruined the planet. Basically. We could argue that human desire and the weakness of popular opinion is the culprit, but advertising exploited those weaknesses, and replaced them with pollution, child labor, illegal labor and DMZ bullshit, globalization, and all of the things we were warned about happening by Orwell, PKD, Huxley, and movies like Alphaville, 1984 and Brazil. It's not exactly like any of those things, but it could be...right? Klein is a muckraker that is very biased. But she has to be. Extreme situations call for extreme measures, and her suggestion is to not conform to consumerism. George Washington and Jesus were non-conformists, too.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ray

    A compelling and worthy book. Klein sets out the ways in which corporations and globalisation have changed our world, and this not always for the better. She outlines how companies such as Nike are hollowed out entities, merely a brand and a marketing machine selling dreams of sporting superstardom and ghetto cool to teen wannabes. In these companies production is offshored via subcontractors and well paying jobs in the US and Europe have become minimum wage jobs in the third world. Labour relat A compelling and worthy book. Klein sets out the ways in which corporations and globalisation have changed our world, and this not always for the better. She outlines how companies such as Nike are hollowed out entities, merely a brand and a marketing machine selling dreams of sporting superstardom and ghetto cool to teen wannabes. In these companies production is offshored via subcontractors and well paying jobs in the US and Europe have become minimum wage jobs in the third world. Labour relations and environmental standards are far below western norms in these offshore production facilities. Klein points out the riches that this creates for the leaders of such companies, which contrasts sharply with the grinding poverty suffered by the factory workers in faraway lands. Klein shows how some people are resisting the bombardment of constant marketing, subverting brands and their marketing messages, and highlighting abuse of labour in distant factories. This activism is creating better awareness of what is happening behind the corporate facade, and is forcing change on the companies. There are some detailed case studies of these campaigns which illustrate how a focused action can bring about small changes. There is also a section on some spectacular own goals as the corporates have tried and failed to squash dissenting messages about their brand - the McLibel case being the most well known (In the UK at least) The book reminds me of one that had a profound effect on me many years ago, The Hidden Persuaders by Vance Packard, which explained how marketing and advertising influences all that we do. In fact Hidden Persuaders is name checked in this book. Thought provoking if somewhat polemic - at times the passionate need to make a particular point undermined the message. It was strange too to read a book about big corporations that does not mention Google, Amazon or Facebook and has only fleeting reference to Apple. The book was written in 2000, before the tech behemoths came of age. I am not sure what message to take from this book. On the one hand it confirms my long held suspicion of mega brands, but their ubiquity and the similarity in their method is depressing.

  6. 4 out of 5

    مروان البلوشي

    لفترة ما في التسعينات، كانت ناعومي كلاين هي الصوت الأميركي الأكثر غضباً ورفضاً لكل نتائج العولمة والثقافة الاستهلاكية التي أصبحنا نعيشها في كل دقيقة وساعة من حياتنا. تحكي كلاين عن طفولتها ومراهقتها قائلةً أنها كانت مهووسة بالموضة والأزياء وأغلى السلع والبضائع، وأنها كانت تقيم نفسها والآخرين من خلال ما يمتلكونه. وكانت تحلم بالعمل في إحدى الشركات الدولية الكبرى. ولكنها تغيرت فيما بعد، وهذا التغير الذي نضج أثناء عملها في مجلة "تايم" الأميركية الشهيرة جعلها ترى أضرار العولمة نمط الحياة الاستهلاكية عل لفترة ما في التسعينات، كانت ناعومي كلاين هي الصوت الأميركي الأكثر غضباً ورفضاً لكل نتائج العولمة والثقافة الاستهلاكية التي أصبحنا نعيشها في كل دقيقة وساعة من حياتنا. تحكي كلاين عن طفولتها ومراهقتها قائلةً أنها كانت مهووسة بالموضة والأزياء وأغلى السلع والبضائع، وأنها كانت تقيم نفسها والآخرين من خلال ما يمتلكونه. وكانت تحلم بالعمل في إحدى الشركات الدولية الكبرى. ولكنها تغيرت فيما بعد، وهذا التغير الذي نضج أثناء عملها في مجلة "تايم" الأميركية الشهيرة جعلها ترى أضرار العولمة نمط الحياة الاستهلاكية على حياة البشر وأخلاقهم ومعاملاتهم اليومية، وكذلك مستويات الفقر والمعيشة في بلدان العالم الثالث. نشرت ناعومي كلاين هذا الكتاب في العام 2000، ينقسم الكتاب إلى 4 أقسام وهي: بلا مكان، ويتحدث عن غزو الاعلانات التجارية للفضاء العام في أي مجتمع. أم القسم الثاني من الكتاب وهو : بلا اختيار، ويتحدث عن الأساليب المختلفة التي تستعملها الشركات العالمية العملاقة للقضاء على صغار التجار وأصحاب المحلات والأعمال الصغيرة المستقلة. أما القسم الثالث من الكاتب وهو : بلا وظيفة، فيتحدث عن الطريقة المشابهة التي يقترب فيها العمل في الشركات الكبرى من العبودية، بدون أن يشعر العاملون هناك بذلك. ويتحدث القسم الأخير من الكتاب وهو : بلا ماركة، عن الحراك العالمي ضد سيطرة الشركات الضخمة المتعددة الجنسيات والثقافة الاستهلاكية على حياتنا. يتميز الكتاب بأسلوب الكاتبة السهل الممتنع (باللغة الإنجليزية) ويتميز كذلك بالأمثلة الواقعية التي صاحبت جميع أقسام الكتاب. كما أن الكاتبة لم تعتمد فحسب على خبرتها كصحفية، بل قامت بمقابلة عشرات العاملين في الشركات الكبرى التي أضحت توجه أسلوب حياتنا، وتقوم ناعومي كلاين بكشف تفاصيل الفساد الأخلاقي وفساد الذمم المنتشر في هذه البيئة. الكتاب يستحق القراءة وخاصة لمن يريد أن يزيد معرفته عن العالم الاستهلاكي الذي نعيش فيه اليوم.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Marc

    Klein surely had good intentions when she wrote this book. Unfortunately it does not take long to realize that she has no idea about what she is actually talking about. Her understanding of economic processes can be labeled as highly flawed. The impressions she is giving about production facilities is dangerous. To think it is for the best interest for developing countries to close these factories is arrogant and plain wrong. Despite what Naomi Klein is trying to imply, the vast majority of the Klein surely had good intentions when she wrote this book. Unfortunately it does not take long to realize that she has no idea about what she is actually talking about. Her understanding of economic processes can be labeled as highly flawed. The impressions she is giving about production facilities is dangerous. To think it is for the best interest for developing countries to close these factories is arrogant and plain wrong. Despite what Naomi Klein is trying to imply, the vast majority of the factory workers is happy to have these jobs and nobody is forced to take them. The big bad international corporations did not lower the working standards, if anything they raised them. Workers are still treated the worst in native enterprises. That being said, there is still a lot of room for improvement. For some reason she further confuses every kind of vandalism with an organized, big time anti-globalisation campaign. I still gave the book 2 stars, because the chapter about lowered working standards and marketing strategies in the western world was interesting enough. This is no good book by any means though and does not earn half the acclaim it is given.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David Sarkies

    Rise of the Corporatocracy 3 May 2012 As I mentioned under The Shock Doctrine, this book is about the internal problems with the American Empire as opposed to the external concerns to the rest of the world. In a sense it is the idea that our culture is being destroyed by a culture of consumerism and that idea of profits before people is the main motivator of the modern corporatocracy. We do need to put this book in context though, being written at the end of the 90s, just after the anti-globalisa Rise of the Corporatocracy 3 May 2012 As I mentioned under The Shock Doctrine, this book is about the internal problems with the American Empire as opposed to the external concerns to the rest of the world. In a sense it is the idea that our culture is being destroyed by a culture of consumerism and that idea of profits before people is the main motivator of the modern corporatocracy. We do need to put this book in context though, being written at the end of the 90s, just after the anti-globalisation protests in Seattle, an event referred to by many as the Battle of Seattle. I guess the events really brought to the forefront how the American Government was willing to go to war with its own people to protect the interests of the corporatocracy. However, remember that between 1989 and 2001 there was no real external threat to the United States, and as such there was no way of distracting the population to an external threat, so another means of distracting them was required. The concept of the brand is not new, however it is during this period that we begin to see a rise against the corporatocracy which resulted in a rejection of the militaristic foreign policy of the early 21st Century. I am going to be honest though, there is nothing different now than there was during the rest of US history, though I will point to the writings of Howard Zinn to direct you to the discrimination and oppression that has been a mainstay of American, and in fact world, history. Things have changed though, and one of the major things was the rise of the middle class. The appearance of the middle class did bring about massive changes in modern society, and one had resulted in the French Revolution. However, industrialisation also brought about the rise of the working class. With the appearance of the working class, the middle class was allowed to develop whereas the working class were then oppressed. However, with the rise of communism, and the fear of a world wide revolution, the working class was appealed to, and universal healthcare (at least in the British Empire) as well as minimum wages and benefits, were introduced. The problem with this was that hiring labour became much more expensive. Now I seem to have diverged a bit, though in many cases I tend to like to try to put a few things in context. Now, I do very much agree with Klein's assessment here, however I do feel that there are a few misleading ideas, such as the idea of cheap labour in poorer countries. Now, don't get me wrong, I am opposed to the mistreatment of any human being, and am opposed to unsafe and discriminatory work practices. This was something that was thrown out of the western world over 100 years ago, however it has simply moved to the developing world. Low wages are not necessarily the problem though, since if you do travel to these places you will discover that the low prices of goods there more than makes up for the low wages. For instance, it costs around $100 a night to stay in a hotel in Melbourne, while it costs $30 a night in Hong Kong, and in Bangkok I found a hotel for $14 (though my friend's comment was that it was probably a pretty shitty hotel). However, low wages are still a problem, but what makes things worse is cost cutting as a means to increase profits. If, for instance, the manufacturer cuts costs so that the worker is working long hours, has no breaks, is not allowed to go to the toilet, and the workplace is so unsafe that accidents regularly happen, then that is not good. However, the price of the shoes, or the shirt, in Australia does not change, despite the factory in Australia closing down and the one in Asia opening up. This is not a means to make the goods cheaper, but a means to increase the profits of the corporation, and in turn the shareholders. No only are the workers being exploited, but so are the consumers in Australia. One thing she talks about is the concept of space. Basically space is being taken over by the corporatocracy. Once one would go shopping on the main street and spend some time in the town park. That is no longer the case: main street has closed down and much of the activity has moved to the shopping centre. There is a big difference between the town centre and the shopping centre and that is that the town centre is a public space while the shopping centre is not. What that means is that the owner of the shopping centre has complete control over what goes on there, thus creating an ordered and sheltered place where people can go and spend money and not be disturbed. However I have noted that at times The Body Shop have plastered their shop with anti-corporate logos, even in the middle of a Westfield Shopping Centre. The further idea of no space is that all of our space is being taken up with advertising, and that the main thought forms of today is the brand logo. However branding once again in not new. Christianity has been using the brand logo for centuries, and in many was it has brought about the development of the brand as a means of advertising. The brand has also been used in the past to mark possession, such as slaves or cattle. However, you could say that the modern brand also marks possession. We see the swoosh on a shirt or my shoes and we know that they are Nikes. Nothing more needs to be said, but then I raise the question of whether those of us who wear the brand are in fact possessions of the company. I would say not, however to me it is a means of cheap advertising, though the cheapest form of advertising is always word of mouth. Personally, I must admit, I like Coopers Pale Ale, and as such I will wear a T-shirt with the brand on it (though I should also point out that the T-shirt was given to me as a gift). I guess, if the brand was a brand that I didn't like, then I wouldn't be wearing it (unless of course I was paid to do so, then I wouldn't have a problem, unless of course it was something that I was violently opposed to). Some have suggested that the modern corporatocracy is launching a war against the middle class. To be honest I am going to dispute that namely because the corporatocracy needs the middle class, and even a cash flushed working class, to survive. Things have changed dramatically since this book was published, as the corporatocracy attempted to increase profits by increasing availability of credit. However, the more people got into debt, the less of an ability they have to pay it back, and when they cannot pay it back the debt must be written off. Come 2008, the entire economy reaches the brink of collapse, and the banks have not yet recovered. The economy survived, barely, and some still say it is on life support. However, many of the masters of the economy have fallen from grace, but this was not through the actions of demonstrators and protesters, but through their own greed. In the end it is much like a Shakespearian tragedy. As mentioned, the corporatocracy need the people to survive, to create and grow their profits, but they have effectively reached critical mass. All of the jobs that filled the pockets of American workers have gone overseas, and as such these workers have been left without anything. Further, their savings accounts have also been drained and their credit has been maxed out, therefore they no longer have any money left to partake in the consumer society. Sure, the staples such as Walmart and McDonalds can survive because everybody needs food, but the others can't. Instead, with no money left to suck out of the working class, they need to look elsewhere for support, and unfortunately that does not exist in the developing world. The workers there are still underpaid and cannot afford the luxuries of the west. Therefore, in the end, the corporatocracy is its own worst enemy, and its endless pursuit of power and profits is going to be its own undoing. Though I still love the free market capitalist who hated short sellers. I know this has nothing to do with this book, but I have to mention it. It is typical of the hippocracy of the extreme capitalist. They love the free market right up to the point that the market spins around and smacks them in the face, then they will jump in with regulations in an attempt to protect their profits. All I can say is if you want a free market, then you have to accept all of the free market, both good and bad. Personally, I see nothing wrong with short sellers, and in fact I actually quite like them because they piss off the capitalist to no end.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Conor

    I'm trying to read through all of Naomi Klein's oeuvre, because I think she is one of the great diatribists of our time. "Shock Doctrine" is one of the most eye-opening pieces of non-fiction I've ever had the privilege of reading, and "This Changes Everything," about climate change, has changed my behavior and attitude toward my surroundings probably more than any other book. "No Logo" is not as impressive an entry into her pantheon, but it prefigures the talent that she would display in her lat I'm trying to read through all of Naomi Klein's oeuvre, because I think she is one of the great diatribists of our time. "Shock Doctrine" is one of the most eye-opening pieces of non-fiction I've ever had the privilege of reading, and "This Changes Everything," about climate change, has changed my behavior and attitude toward my surroundings probably more than any other book. "No Logo" is not as impressive an entry into her pantheon, but it prefigures the talent that she would display in her later works. Perhaps it's because it was a bit dated--references to the influence of MTV and Nike abound; brand hegemons like Apple--whose share price has since increased by a factor of about 300x--do not even merit mention. Sweatshops were the cause celebre of the 1990s, and it's hard to say whether we hear less about them because corporations recognize that it's no longer profitable to employ exploitative sweatshop labor (as Klein points out: revenue and not morality is always the gravamen of this calculus), or because we grew fatigued by the effort and tolerate them now, or at least their slightly less exploitative post-1990s iterations. One highlight of the book came toward its end, when Klein talks about the agency of youth consumers and of disenfranchised yet culturally relevant black and brown youth who live in the nation's cities. It's pretty incredible that brands as powerful as Nike and Disney caved to the pressure of these individuals, who understood themselves to have been chumps for paying 30x the cost of a shoe, and having engaged in the exploitation of other marginalized people throughout the world in so doing, all to pad the larders of megarich companies who had co-opted their sense of style and fashion to begin with. It's kind of great that people won't tolerate hostile corporate forces invading their space. To wit, I've been venturing beyond my West Brooklyn/Lower Manhattan ambit of late, and have found myself in the Bronx, in Central Queens, and in white ethnic enclaves like Greenpoint. Milo Yiannopoulos, the smugly execrable male Ann Coulter/low-rent Oscar Wilde with a bronzer problem who is currently afflicting our society with his "provocative" yet wholly warmed-over ideas in the Trump era, is putting out his own book, entitled "Dangerous." I'm all for free speech, and come from the Millsian/Skokie line of ACLU types who think that one of the only things America is truly great at, and has benefited from, is its staunch defense of freedom of speech in the public arena. Even if they were repellent, which they surely are, I would defend Mr. Yiannopoulos' right to advocate his views. But freedom of speech is important for allowing new ideas to surface, not for perseverating the same "Muslims are bad!" "White men are responsible for all cultural innovations!" and "Women make up rape allegations for attention!" tommyrot that has been around since the Crusades, if not earlier, and has been widely discredited for centuries; we need this type of public voice like we need lectures about why the Earth is flat. Mr. Yiannopoulos is a gadfly, and he has never propounded an original idea other than that he is somehow noteworthy, as far as I can tell. Anyway, I noticed that ads for his book, "Dangerous," were cynically posted all over the subway stations in less gentrified areas, ostensibly because people in the other areas would not tolerate their living spaces being desecrated by such an inane, bigoted idiot and his quest to enrich himself by sowing dissension. And happily, I noticed that of all the ads on the subway, even in the areas not teeming with effete latte liberals like myself, these ads were almost always the only ones torn down, desecrated, denounced, destroyed. As Klein notes, there may be no legal theory to support these actions, but one of the most powerful ways in which people can revolt against the invasion of their spaces and communities by hostile, capitalist attempts to make money off of them and their neighbors is through hostile, pointed destruction of the property that these forces use to accomplish their aims. I'm sure that Mr. Yiannopoulos would have some tired quip about the breeding of these people or their motivations, and how it shows that the left (read: the not extreme right) is intolerant of free speech, but this really just reflects an overbroad view of the protections to which private property and money are entitled, and a cramped view of the ways in which speech, protest, and dissent can, should, and will increasingly be expressed.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dorien

    definitely some good information, but something about the books style turns me off. i feel a little preached to, or manipulated. I guess my recent-college-student self wants more of an attempt to appear objective. objectivity may be an illusion, but it is one of my personal favorites.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Pink

    I skimmed most of this. Not that anything was wrong with the book, it just felt like it was stating the obvious to me. Maybe this would have seemed like newer information at the time of publishing. Right now, in 2016, with my anti-capitalist mind, this didn't tell me anything I wanted to know.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rick

    Reading this book more than ten years after it came out is hard. It's difficult to realize how momentous it was at the time. It's hard to understand that this book is one of the cultural underpinnings of the anti-sweatshop movement, the WTO protests, Occupy Wall Street. The cynicism about brands that Klein documents is so pervasive now it's hard to remember how much people just loved brands blindly and completely at one point. THis book completely changed things. Having read several Klein articl Reading this book more than ten years after it came out is hard. It's difficult to realize how momentous it was at the time. It's hard to understand that this book is one of the cultural underpinnings of the anti-sweatshop movement, the WTO protests, Occupy Wall Street. The cynicism about brands that Klein documents is so pervasive now it's hard to remember how much people just loved brands blindly and completely at one point. THis book completely changed things. Having read several Klein articles in recent years - as well as the revised forward to the ten year edition - you can see that Klein has moved away from using the concept of brands as a fulcrum for her intellectual arguments against certain aspects of globalization, corporatism, etc. But not completely - Brands are still the most visible component of a company, and, thus, serve as a mechanism to attack them. That is still useful. In some ways, though, the brand approach to anti-globalism seems a bit dated. Many of the sinister examples Klein listed didn't pan out, and some of the companies are hardly massive brand juggernauts these days, just a little over ten years later. I almost laughed out loud about the panic Klein bestows on Celebration, Florida. I had just visited last summer and it was nothing like she described. This, of course, is because of the fall of one of the villains of the brand portion of the book - Michael Eisner. However, in reading many economists' work on brand and advertising, Klein has come up more than once, and indeed, her concept of Brand disconnects the concept of Brand from its original economic form. This can have some profound ramifications, and many modern academic economists have explored it further. Concretely, a brand no longer symbolizes a specific origin or quality, in fact it could signal just the opposite. It's a weird thought. Finally, having worked in advertising for 15 years, I can say that Klein definitely intentionally or not distorts the motivations of many of the creatives she lists. I know because there are a few places in the book where she references campaigns I worked on, and we were thinking nothing of the sort of plots and schemes she attributed to us. Whether in the end that matters may be immaterial - the effect is the same - but the book does read substantially more like it's all a big single plot than, in my experience, any of it really is.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brent

    We were editors in Canada's student press at the same time -- 1992-93. Even then, Klein was in a league of her own. Well, Doug Saunders was up there, too. If I'm going to be honest with myself, I have not yet read this book for very selfish reasons: while Naomi's star continued to climb, I chose alcohol, drugs and self-absorption. Klein's fame arose from a commitment to serious journalism and leftist politics. I was jealous. At an ORCUP Conference in 1993 (Ontario Region Canadian University Press) We were editors in Canada's student press at the same time -- 1992-93. Even then, Klein was in a league of her own. Well, Doug Saunders was up there, too. If I'm going to be honest with myself, I have not yet read this book for very selfish reasons: while Naomi's star continued to climb, I chose alcohol, drugs and self-absorption. Klein's fame arose from a commitment to serious journalism and leftist politics. I was jealous. At an ORCUP Conference in 1993 (Ontario Region Canadian University Press), I arranged for a group of student journalists to head to U of Toronto to join in. The Varsity Blue, UofT's paper, edited by Naomi, were hosting. One night, while hanging out in some pub on Spadina, with members of the still white-hot Kids in the Hall quaffing pints at the bar, I realized that I didn't have a place to stay. My writing had gotten some attention through the Canadian University Press wire -- a precursor to the internet (my age!), and Naomi seemed to be a fan. She jumped up, handed me a key and said, "That's the key to my apartment. You can stay there." I passed out on her living room floor, waking up just briefly enough to see her staring over me, shaking her head. I was too drunk to fuck, too drunk to engage in all-night political discussion with Naomi Klein. No regrets, right? But what the fuck was I thinking? Naomi, please keep doing what you're doing. And, for what it's worth: I'm enjoying your book (so far lol).

  14. 5 out of 5

    stupidus

    Yea but no but... It was a nice try, and while I could probably agree on many levels with the author, I still call Klein a hippie. I have always thought it to be wholly unreasonable to demand and to sincerely expect anyone and everyone to offer their own plan as to how things should be done as opposed to how we do things now. This is preposterous. Anyone who can come up with valid arguments why things currently are amiss and why they should be remedied, must be allowed to voice their opinion despi Yea but no but... It was a nice try, and while I could probably agree on many levels with the author, I still call Klein a hippie. I have always thought it to be wholly unreasonable to demand and to sincerely expect anyone and everyone to offer their own plan as to how things should be done as opposed to how we do things now. This is preposterous. Anyone who can come up with valid arguments why things currently are amiss and why they should be remedied, must be allowed to voice their opinion despite not necessarily being able to personally formulate (then and there, or even at all) an alternative, better, way of doing things. It's cool if you can, but it shouldn't be a qualification for even being allowed to enter the debate. There isn't a single person on this planet who could come up with a perfect plan because there are no perfect plans! Almost no one will admit that capitalism is without glitches, but many will assert with gusto that capitalism just requires a little bit of tweaking and some tender loving care. This is absolute nonsense. Of course we could always have better democracy. People could easily be given more and better options to vote for changes, for example. We could have "local governments" with localized budgets within different parts of cities to enable those people living there to make concrete decisions and plans that will affect their everyday lives directly. We could do loads to improve democracy, trust me. We could also find ways to actually sustain businesses and private individuals to operate in a free market reality - not just in free market make-believe. This would most likely mean that players who began to dominate markets need to be split in one way or the other to enable other and especially up-and-coming individuals and companies to compete against them in much more fairer conditions. Unlike now, no one could really rest on their laurels and/or just buy off competition. Everyone wanting to play the game would have to be innovating and reinventing themselves constantly. Not now and then, or once in a blue moon, but every single day. Stuff that I personally can't accept is: a) corporations aiming to change schools' curriculums and subtly trying to greenwash their own history and business practices - in a word their public image. b) corporations cornering smaller competitors by dumping prices until local/regional competition is snuffed for good. c) corporations gaining even bigger share of the markets simply because they can buy other competitors out if they can afford it. This is the exact opposite of what Adam Smith called free market economy. This is rule of the few and finally rule of one. And if and when corporations reach a status where they can effectively sensor what people can and can not buy, should be called totalitarianism because that's what it is when you can't buy a book or some other product from anywhere else simply because those few corporations still left will refuse to take them up for sell. d) allowing corporations to grow so big and powerful that they can effectively land in places where they are not taxed, where they can disregard local laws and regulations at will, where they can effectively treat their labor force and the environment any way they want. Even if some poor, underprivileged, schmuck wouldn't mind how the company does business, I abso-f*cking-lutely do, and I'm not the only one! If you pollute the environment (or treat your employees like dirt), you clean up the mess, pay hefty fines, and take some time off from doing business for the time being because you clearly are not a responsible and trustworthy player and the society as a whole can and will not tolerate such behavior. Simple and fair, and not complex or mean at all. If this what we have today is free market economy, we might as well reintroduce chains and just revert to calling workforce as slaves again. I mean why not? We already love to call unemployed people - I'm sorry, "job seekers" - as cancer, vermins, and so on. I don't know about you but to me it echos 1930's Germany. I think it's pretty vile view on life if and when (read In Defense of Global Capitalism) people in effect say that it's still miles better to be working in a sweatshop somewhere and get paid at least something than having to resort to selling one's own ass to anyone keen on buying or just starving to death. This line of thinking not only legitimizes wretchedness and indecency. It guarantees that nothing will ever change for the better. Now, I may think that hippies are moronic bunch of people, but folks who try to reason the above scenario disgust me to no end. Especially coming from a guy who got all the chances in the world provided by the society in a socialist paradise called Sweden. I wonder if he would have had the same tolerance for pain, strength of character and general will power to take it up his small boy's ass from some anonymous older, charming Swedish gentlemen, had he been born in the slums of India, Brazil or Vietnam and be asked to help his family and relatives by all means necessary - and there either not being any sweatshops around or all just refusing to let him work? I'm sure he would have.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Peter Mcloughlin

    This book is about fifteen years old so the examples are a little dated but they could be replaced by a slew of new ones that make the same points about branding, offshoring, and capitalist economics and its effect on workers and civil society. This book lays out the machinery behind the curtain of our consumer culture that grinds away labor, the public sphere, the quality of our lives and any value not related to the profit motive. Hipster cool, faux diversity are the alluring mask behind the c This book is about fifteen years old so the examples are a little dated but they could be replaced by a slew of new ones that make the same points about branding, offshoring, and capitalist economics and its effect on workers and civil society. This book lays out the machinery behind the curtain of our consumer culture that grinds away labor, the public sphere, the quality of our lives and any value not related to the profit motive. Hipster cool, faux diversity are the alluring mask behind the corporate monster. This book was true then as it is now only now the fraying of our society is further advanced and has produced an ugly politics from the failure of the left. The alluring mask dressed in important diversity and tolerance and gender equality have become the what angry populists have been misdirected by rightwing media to associate with the forces grinding ordinary people down. Instead of going after the bad aspects of capitalist liberal democracy the liberal democratic parts are attacked to preserve the capitalism. Naomi Klein cuts through the nonsense and gets to the core truths. Good book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Rafal

    Wstrząsnęła mną ta książka. Przenikliwością analiz, wzruszającą i piękną naiwnością recept i wieloma przykładami pokazującymi, że tak bardzo nie wiemy, co naprawdę dzieje się pod cienką warstwą wielkich politycznych i ekonomicznych snów o potędze. Po przeczytaniu tej książki jeszcze bardziej zazdroszczę zachodowi kultury protestu. Tego, że potrafią zgromadzić się wokół jakiejś idei i zacząć o nią walczyć. Demokratycznie, kulturalnie, czasem burzliwie ale konsekwentnie i często skutecznie. Chciał Wstrząsnęła mną ta książka. Przenikliwością analiz, wzruszającą i piękną naiwnością recept i wieloma przykładami pokazującymi, że tak bardzo nie wiemy, co naprawdę dzieje się pod cienką warstwą wielkich politycznych i ekonomicznych snów o potędze. Po przeczytaniu tej książki jeszcze bardziej zazdroszczę zachodowi kultury protestu. Tego, że potrafią zgromadzić się wokół jakiejś idei i zacząć o nią walczyć. Demokratycznie, kulturalnie, czasem burzliwie ale konsekwentnie i często skutecznie. Chciałbym, żeby to było kiedyś możliwe w moim kraju, w którym można ludziom zabrać wolność, demokrację, intymność i wszystko co ma wartość w imię fobii jednego człowieka... i gdy to się dzieje - jak dobrze pójdzie to wyjdzie na ulicę parę tysięcy ludzi raz na pół roku. Wiele o tym właśnie - kulturze protestu - można przeczytać w tej książce. A poza tym jest świetna z wielu innych względów. Oczywiście przede wszystkim dlatego, że dość bezwzględnie demaskuje jak wielkie marki i korporacje robią nam bezustannie wodę z mózgu.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    (drastically condensed reaction) It's a good start to a larger, overarching leftist critique of the way we live now. Klein does a fine job of explaining and exhuming many of the classic discontents of Capitalism, let alone the free-market nuttiness we've come to know. It's worth reading simply for the shedding of some further light on many of the social conditions we seem to take for granted. The trouble is, she doesn't seem to have much to offer in the way of a viable, significant response- an al (drastically condensed reaction) It's a good start to a larger, overarching leftist critique of the way we live now. Klein does a fine job of explaining and exhuming many of the classic discontents of Capitalism, let alone the free-market nuttiness we've come to know. It's worth reading simply for the shedding of some further light on many of the social conditions we seem to take for granted. The trouble is, she doesn't seem to have much to offer in the way of a viable, significant response- an alternative program. She makes the point (sort of over-makes it, to my mind) about culture jamming and such and it sure sounds cool and interesting and worthwhile. It's just that it's also more than a little cosmetic and somewhat self-congratulatory and ultimately rather ineffective. There isn't much in the way of *constructive* criticism, not to patronize the book to death, in that there are many ills correctly and articulately diagnosed but not much in the way of remedy. This is a problem, especially since the argument is known pretty widely in a general way and therefore the need for some kind of counter-program is all the more pressing. I am going to try Disaster Capitalism one of these days and maybe it will have more of a bolder, tougher, more necessary impact.\ \ ten years after this book's breakthrough success, we've seen many of its concerns rear their ugly head and make so huge and unmistakable and infinitely complex a mark that, discouragingly, it seems we're (people of the left, that is, those may take a lot away from this book and the already converted it preaches to) still standing at square one- acknowledgment- and gazing up at this monolith, and taking the temperature....

  18. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    This book's divided into four sections—No Space, No Choice, No Jobs, and No Logo. The first three are cool, they talk about, respectively, how corporations in the 90s took over all our space with their logos, how we have no choice but to buy their products since they buy all the other smaller companies and it's crazy hard to find indie stores anymore, and how there aren't any good jobs since corporations like Nike outsource everything to Burma. These first three sections are really good. Everyon This book's divided into four sections—No Space, No Choice, No Jobs, and No Logo. The first three are cool, they talk about, respectively, how corporations in the 90s took over all our space with their logos, how we have no choice but to buy their products since they buy all the other smaller companies and it's crazy hard to find indie stores anymore, and how there aren't any good jobs since corporations like Nike outsource everything to Burma. These first three sections are really good. Everyone knows corporations are evil and this book tells you about it. The final section, No Logo, however, which takes up about 40% of the book's entire length, is about how some people, "culture jammers" or "adbusters" or whatever, are starting to fight back, and spray-paint ads to say funny stuff like "Think Stupid" instead of "Think Different," or, you know, protesting or whatever. WHO CARES. Why are corporations still doing evil stuff, then? No one wants to read 200 pages about a bunch of people running around pasting up posters and organizing rallies. At least I don't. But I did. So I say, read the first three sections of this book, because they're really good, esp. the first two, and skip the last one. Radiohead likes this book so it can't be that bad but then again they love Douglas Adams too.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jeff

    Having read it about a year after it was first released, I felt as though my eyes had been suddenly opened to a rather horrible reality about how globalized (a.k.a. transnational) capitalism was concentrating wealth in the hands of a powerful few and exploiting a poor majority for their labour. To read it now would surely reveal dated views of the economic and cultural world in which we find ourselves. I would also have to admit that by about page 378 I was finding the tone a bit shrill. In spit Having read it about a year after it was first released, I felt as though my eyes had been suddenly opened to a rather horrible reality about how globalized (a.k.a. transnational) capitalism was concentrating wealth in the hands of a powerful few and exploiting a poor majority for their labour. To read it now would surely reveal dated views of the economic and cultural world in which we find ourselves. I would also have to admit that by about page 378 I was finding the tone a bit shrill. In spite of these areas of concern, I think that Klein might have been one of the earliest authors to tackle some of these issues. Even if some critics feel as though Klein and others like her aren't successfully proposing alternatives to a sort of free market where only the biggest corporate dogs eat and everyone else waits for scraps, the book does accomplish one important task: convincing the reader to rethink the consequences of their buying habits. As a consumer I very often have a choice of what I buy and perhaps more importantly, what I don't buy. I may not always be able to find an option to a shirt made in a Bangladeshi sweatshop firetrap, but at least I am aware enough to seek options.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    Whew! I finally finished this dense and comprehensive look at how our lives have been reduced to corporate sponsorship (this message brought to you by Nike! Enhance your intellect, strive, go further, Nike.). Naomi Klein leaves no angle unexamined, no critique left unexplored. From the way that branding has affected our daily lives (utter ubiquity and overkill) to the way that it has effected our jobs, (loss of manufacturing jobs... jobs moving overseas to contract laborers) to the way those lab Whew! I finally finished this dense and comprehensive look at how our lives have been reduced to corporate sponsorship (this message brought to you by Nike! Enhance your intellect, strive, go further, Nike.). Naomi Klein leaves no angle unexamined, no critique left unexplored. From the way that branding has affected our daily lives (utter ubiquity and overkill) to the way that it has effected our jobs, (loss of manufacturing jobs... jobs moving overseas to contract laborers) to the way those laborers are mistreated and exploited (sweatshops) to the fact that everyone is doing it, not just "name brands", to the eventual backlash and counter movement this book covers a lot of ground in 458 pages. Although some of this information is a little dated (the bulk of it was written in 1998) the movement against corporate hegemony still persists. Hopefully the current economic shakeup will partially reset the standard mold of business as usual, only time will tell. A good companion read to Shock Doctrine if you really want to dive down the Rabbit Hole

  21. 4 out of 5

    Zanna

    I first read this book in 2003 and when I took it out of storage I decided to give it another look. I'm glad I did because it's better than I remember, and encouraged me to pick up Klein's more recent work. Klein's target at first glance seems to be the big name companies' aggressive and ubiquitous branding of our public spaces and institutions. She explains the shift from owning the means of production and manufacturing goods to outsourcing and pumping the massive savings into brand building, st I first read this book in 2003 and when I took it out of storage I decided to give it another look. I'm glad I did because it's better than I remember, and encouraged me to pick up Klein's more recent work. Klein's target at first glance seems to be the big name companies' aggressive and ubiquitous branding of our public spaces and institutions. She explains the shift from owning the means of production and manufacturing goods to outsourcing and pumping the massive savings into brand building, stuffing the psyches of target markets with recognition, affection and even passion for faceless corporations. The worst excesses of branding shade into censorship, as whole university campuses and courses accept sponsorship deals loaded with gagging clauses forbidding brand criticism and demands that students be exposed to their advertising material. Squashing free speech is disturbing enough, but this would be a shallow critique if Klein didn't go much, much further. The second section of the book points out what brands like Wal-Mart and Starbucks spend their huge profits on: blanketing towns and cities with their outlets, suffocating the competition as they go. As other options wither, nothing is left but the corporate vision of 'choice', presenting culture as something mindlessly consumed, never answered or created by its 'market'. Still, this is all about Westerners' lifestyles and comfort; pretty trivial compared to the painstaking work Noam Chomsky, for example, has done in documenting multinationals' manipulation of US foreign policy under cover of propaganda at home: installing puppet dictators, engineering brutal crushing of popular uprisings and attempts to nationalise or retain local control of resources and systematically denying the rights of indigenous populations to land, liberty, free association etc etc etc etc etc. But Klein is not done. The third section tells how the brands can afford to pay celebrities millions to endorse them, saturate public spaces and clog high streets and malls: by exploiting their workers. CEOs collect their six & seven figure salaries and are lauded for 'streamlining' the business - cutting jobs. This happens at both ends of the chain: in the underpaid and insecure temporary 'McJobs' in outlets, and far more shockingly, in sweatshops and resource-extraction & processing sites in production. The stories of sub-subsistence wages, physical and psychological abuse, sexual harrassment, child labour, exposure to toxic chemicals, brutal suppression of attempts to unionise and other horrors that Klein documents became common knowledge in the brand backlash of the nineties The final section of the book is all about that pushback against corporations, as consumers came together to tell the brands they would not stand for starvation wages and child exploitation. This is a very multi-layered resistance, and Klein is highly critical of multinationals 'greenwashing' and code-of-conduct writing, which she points out is all about the comfort of consumers to buy without guilt. The people fighting for basic rights in Export Processing Zones are 'too busy organising factory workers to bother with Western lifestyle politics'. She also faults the 'unthreatening' (academic) critique of brand-culture that treats people as stupid and 'unable to police their own desires'. Ultimately, change has to come from the bottom: workers making branded goods must be empowered to organise and negotiate wages they can live on and conditions that don't destroy their health. Klein writes in an engaging journalistic style that's persuasive and easy to read. This is a long book and it could be shorter to make its point, but it would be less entertaining, less accessible, and less quotable.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek frequently uses as an explanatory topos the following reading of Einstein's theory of relativity: In the special theory of relativity (so the story goes) matter has the effect of curving the space around it, so the shortest distance between two points is not necessarily a straight line. However, with the shift to the general theory of relativity the story is reversed; the curvature of space is no longer the effect of matter's gravity, it is rather matter itself Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek frequently uses as an explanatory topos the following reading of Einstein's theory of relativity: In the special theory of relativity (so the story goes) matter has the effect of curving the space around it, so the shortest distance between two points is not necessarily a straight line. However, with the shift to the general theory of relativity the story is reversed; the curvature of space is no longer the effect of matter's gravity, it is rather matter itself which is the side-effect of the curvature of space, the curvature of space is itself the primordial fact. Whether or not this is an accurate summary of Einstein's contribution to twentieth century physics, it is a useful schema for understanding the transformation Naomi Klein charts in No Logo. If, in early capitalism, the commodity itself is the primary material fact of economic existence, then it would seem that marketing and advertising are the concomitant warping of the ideological/cultural space that is the natural by-product of material commodities' vigorous efforts to get themselves sold on the open market. However, as we transition eras into late capitalism, a profound shift occurs, as branding itself becomes increasingly important. With the success of the mega-brands of the nineties (Nike, Starbucks, Microsoft, etc.) what is ultimately for sale is no longer mere commodities but the brand itself, and the physical products (shoes, coffee, software, etc.) that advertising used to serve become mere vehicles for selling the increasingly ubiquitous brands. This is the shift that Naomi Klein beautifully details in this book, with copious charts and graphs, endless footnotes and references, and engaging and readable writing. Klein is an impeccable researcher, and her marshaling of the data and statistics in the service of the story she has to tell are flawless. If anyone doubts that there still exist Dickensian nightmares of exploitation in the contemporary world of global capitalism (or if anyone has faith that the rising tide does indeed lift all boats) then this is the book you should read. My one caveat is that while Klein is a masterful journalist and a capable storyteller, she is at best (at least in this book) a mediocre theoretician. While her descriptive powers of documenting the current realities are formidable, her analysis of the possibilities of resistance and her prescriptions for future movements leave something to be desired. In particular, the last section of the book, devoted to an exploration of various forms of resistance movements and Klein's own unwavering optimism, seem, from the vantage point of a decade after the book was published, a tad bit naive and underwhelming. I mean, has the Reclaim the Streets movement really thrown a monkey-wrench into the forces of gentrification and homogenization reshaping the faces of North American cities (as Klein breathlessly anticipates in one chapter)? Fortunately, Klein has since published The Shock Doctrine, a far more sober accounting of the events and economic ideologies of the past decade. However, despite the dated feel of the final chapters, No Logo remains relevant for anyone trying to get a picture of contemporary economic realities. It offers a treasure trove of data and documentation that continues to serve as reliable ammunition for anyone wishing to take the wind out of the sails of today's counter-revolutionary apologists of capital that continue to be so much in vogue and dominate global policy making at the dawn of the twenty-first century.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    Ten years ago, Naomi Klein's No Logo was a virtual fashion accessory for a certain generation. Everywhere you went, hip earnest types could be seen reading it - on the train, on holiday, even in Starbucks sipping on a latte (with obligatory sprinkling of irony). Being neither hip nor earnest myself, I managed to miss out on this achingly cool phenomenon, and only picked up a copy to read earlier this year. The good news is that if you're coming to No Logo a decade or so after the party ended, be Ten years ago, Naomi Klein's No Logo was a virtual fashion accessory for a certain generation. Everywhere you went, hip earnest types could be seen reading it - on the train, on holiday, even in Starbucks sipping on a latte (with obligatory sprinkling of irony). Being neither hip nor earnest myself, I managed to miss out on this achingly cool phenomenon, and only picked up a copy to read earlier this year. The good news is that if you're coming to No Logo a decade or so after the party ended, be assured that it is still very much an essential read. Not so much 'out of date' as 'of its time' - but all the more interesting for it. Most people today will already be aware that corporations and exploitation go together like burgers and fries. That if we scratched the surface of some of our most successful brands - Nike, Levi's, Disney - we would find something noticeably different from the clean, wholesome image adorning our billboards and magazines. What Klein has done is force our gaze into this hidden world - of sweatshops, child labour and corporate censorship - to remove any doubt about the full extent of the price being paid for our brand-filled lifestyles. It's a price that ranges from troubling (the creeping corporate colonisation of academia) to horrifying (the appalling conditions at Cavite where workers slave over products destined for western malls). Infuriating and depressing it may be, No Logo is also a book that revels in the sheer tie-dyed trendiness of standing up to the machine; of anticorporate activism, of culture jamming, lobbying and reclaiming the streets. Indeed it is Klein's unbounded optimism - in a continually thriving underground movement, independent media, spontaneous street parties and protests - that forms a key part of the book's appeal. Surprisingly objective and able to analyse her own prejudices, this is more even-handed than you might expect. She predicts and acknowledges the cynicism, but refuses to let it dampen her spirit. A few inaccuracies in Klein's data don't alter the fact that this is an important and well-argued book. At 500 pages, it's possibly a little bloated, but there's no denying the strength of material here to inform as well as outrage. I certainly didn't know anything about export processing zones before reading this book. Nor did I know much about anticorporate activism beyond the media portrayal of unwashed students and anarchist yobs. More than anything, Klein deserves credit for bringing the experiences of previously invisible foreign workers and the other darker sides of corporatism to our attention. Don't let the book's age put you off - the themes are still relevant, no matter how many 'corporate responsibility' statements have since cropped up on the big brand websites. As an extra, this 10th anniversary edition includes a new introduction by the author, offering some post 9/11, financial meltdown, Brand Obama context.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Todd Martin

    No Space: Public space is being branded at an ever increasing rate. From sports stadiums and athletes to concerts and educational institutions. These brands have an extraordinary influence over public policy and our lives. No Choice: As companies gain power they are taking over entire segments of the marketplace and ‘synergizing’ their brand. The classic example is the publishing company, which owns the distributing company that gets the product to the stores, the communications outlets which prov No Space: Public space is being branded at an ever increasing rate. From sports stadiums and athletes to concerts and educational institutions. These brands have an extraordinary influence over public policy and our lives. No Choice: As companies gain power they are taking over entire segments of the marketplace and ‘synergizing’ their brand. The classic example is the publishing company, which owns the distributing company that gets the product to the stores, the communications outlets which provide the marketing and advertising and the retail outlets which sell to consumers. To a large extent, these monopolies get to pick and choose what you see, hear and read. The free exchange of ideas is limited and the scope of public conversation restricted. No Jobs: Companies are increasingly outsourcing all manufacturing operations to 3rd party vendors which primarily reside overseas in impoverished countries. In free trade zones around the world individuals work in sweatshops for slave wages to produce overpriced branded products for the developed world. As more companies adopt this model of production, there is a race to the bottom as good manufacturing jobs in the US are exported. No Logo: Student groups, universities, unions, shareholders and municipal governments are fighting back by holding companies responsible for the work practices of their suppliers. They are leveraging the power of the company brand as a means of shaming these institutions into behaving responsibly. Will it work? At the time the book was written (late 1990’s), the author seemed to sense a global movement building. Ten years later, it’s hard to see any appreciable change. If anything, companies have only grown stronger and have increased their hold over federal lawmakers and their visibility in the public sphere.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Петър Стойков

    Знаете ли, че Nike примерно, всъщност не произвежда маратонки и дрехи? Те просто поръчват изработката на външни фирми и се занимават само с рекламата – тяхната единствена дейност е да градят имидж на запетайката в логото си… „Без лого“ е много добър учебник, който изследва пазарното и рекламно поведение на големите компании (основно за облекло), които градят дейността си основно около създаването на имидж и привлекателност на своето лого – защото когато съвременният потребител купува дрехи, той т Знаете ли, че Nike примерно, всъщност не произвежда маратонки и дрехи? Те просто поръчват изработката на външни фирми и се занимават само с рекламата – тяхната единствена дейност е да градят имидж на запетайката в логото си… „Без лого“ е много добър учебник, който изследва пазарното и рекламно поведение на големите компании (основно за облекло), които градят дейността си основно около създаването на имидж и привлекателност на своето лого – защото когато съвременният потребител купува дрехи, той търси по-скоро определен имидж и послание, които тези дрехи носят, отколкото нещо друго. Описани и анализирани са много рекламни кампании на най-големите компании – конкретни неща и примери, които няма да намерите в нито една друга книга за маркетинг – рекламиране на концерти, концепции на плакати, промоционални стратегии, териториално позициониране на реклами… Единственото странно нещо в книгата е, че тя всъщност изобщо не е замислена като маркетингов учебник, а като антикапиталистическа пропаганда – видите ли, колко са коварни лошите компании, че действат така. Но политическите пристрастия на авторката едва ли касаят непредубеденият читател, а и не влияят на качествата на дацената ценна информация.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Troy

    Naomi Klein is an incredibly sloppy scholar. As a writer she reminds me of Malcolm Gladwell. Both write books that seem as if their author has reflectively thrown everything they've found that seems vaguely interrelated and interesting. In this book, Klein takes on marketing, branding, and sweatshops. Her main theme is the gradual corporatization of the world, but I find it hard to compare the absolute horrors of sweatshops (which her investigative journalism exposed beautifully) to the public e Naomi Klein is an incredibly sloppy scholar. As a writer she reminds me of Malcolm Gladwell. Both write books that seem as if their author has reflectively thrown everything they've found that seems vaguely interrelated and interesting. In this book, Klein takes on marketing, branding, and sweatshops. Her main theme is the gradual corporatization of the world, but I find it hard to compare the absolute horrors of sweatshops (which her investigative journalism exposed beautifully) to the public eyesores of billboard advertising or the general annoyance of mass marketing and branding. Which is not to say it's not related, but the problems of the sweatshops, imo, are much more relevant and interesting to our lives and worlds, then the minor annoyances of a logo on a stadium. Again, don't get me wrong. It's all important, and it's all interrelated, but conflating the subjects - conflating something that is horrifically exploitative and is damaging individuals and countries to the concerns of well-heeled Americans who don't like advertising seem to me absurd. That said, it's a good book, well written and full of great reporting on sweat shops and the way corporations silently run them (and fuck over nearly everyone, including, eventually, US, the consumers).

  27. 5 out of 5

    Celia

    God, this was such a fantastic book. I'm sure you've heard of it - it's about sweatshop labour, globalisation, branding, the way in which companies produce and how that's changed over the years. I picked this up because it was on the reading list in the back of Scarlett Thomas's PopCo, and I can see why - the sort of realisations that Alice in PopCo has about branding are all in here, as are the seeds of the movements against branding. This is a depressing book, of course. I'm certain that so man God, this was such a fantastic book. I'm sure you've heard of it - it's about sweatshop labour, globalisation, branding, the way in which companies produce and how that's changed over the years. I picked this up because it was on the reading list in the back of Scarlett Thomas's PopCo, and I can see why - the sort of realisations that Alice in PopCo has about branding are all in here, as are the seeds of the movements against branding. This is a depressing book, of course. I'm certain that so many of the products I own are produced in sweatshops, and that I'm influenced by branding in all sorts of ways. I can see why this encourages so many peope to become activists - because it's affecting your life in such an everyday way. Even if I don't go out and start altering advertising, I think I'll still think about it in a different way in the future, and try and source products that aren't produced by global brands utilising sweatshop labour.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Marcia

    I thought I knew enough insidious information on logos, branding and multinational corporations, but this book definitely pushed back the curtain even wider on this pervasive element in society. It's true that what we purchase is no longer about substance, but about the idea that is being sold. It's made me rethink every single purchase that I make. Do I really need it? Or is it just that I want it? But why do I want it? Hopefully this book will leave you posing the same questions in your daily p I thought I knew enough insidious information on logos, branding and multinational corporations, but this book definitely pushed back the curtain even wider on this pervasive element in society. It's true that what we purchase is no longer about substance, but about the idea that is being sold. It's made me rethink every single purchase that I make. Do I really need it? Or is it just that I want it? But why do I want it? Hopefully this book will leave you posing the same questions in your daily purchaes long after you've finished the book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    For an understanding of what's going on in the current social sphere, No Logo should be required reading. Not that the book is perfect, but it contains a wonderful analysis of how the corporate sphere has expanded to fill virtually all areas of public space and dialog. One of the most surprising aspects in reading the book is the realization of how complicit we have all been in our own corporate takeover. In the early 90s, major companies (Nike being the paradigm, but for from the only example) For an understanding of what's going on in the current social sphere, No Logo should be required reading. Not that the book is perfect, but it contains a wonderful analysis of how the corporate sphere has expanded to fill virtually all areas of public space and dialog. One of the most surprising aspects in reading the book is the realization of how complicit we have all been in our own corporate takeover. In the early 90s, major companies (Nike being the paradigm, but for from the only example) shifted their focus from manufacturing to brands - from selling objects to selling "lifestyles." It might seem like a ridiculous concept, but even well-educated, critical people have fallen for it. I've never bought into the idea that Nike embodies the sports ethos, but I am one of the legions of computer geeks who have gotten into long, heated arguments about the merits of Microsoft vs. Apple. Apple's ads push the idea that what it sells is innovation and hipness - but Apple just sells electronic equipment. To believe otherwise is to have fallen for their marketing ploy hook, line, and sinker. Not a electronics nerd? Chances are, then, you've probably shopped at The Body Shoppe because of its family-eco atmosphere, or in some other way unknowingly bought into some company's lifestyle image. The first section of the book deals with the fallout from this switch in focus by the major multinationals, divided into three chapters. The first, "No Space", deals with how branding is encroaching on all aspects of life (most insidiously, education - if you want to convert minions to your brand, best to start them young). The second, "No Choice", talks about how the spread of branding restricts public dialog (brands are, after all, privately owned and subject to copyright/trademark, allowing the companies to control who says what about them - while at the same time expanding to control more of the media and public spaces). The third, "No Jobs", deals with how the switch from products to branding creates a logical divorce from manufacturing, and therefore from any need to support workers in an ethical fashion. Each one of these chapters is persuasively argued and incredibly well-researched. It is these chapters that make No Logo a must read, and the reason it gets five stars. It is in the final section, "No Logo", that Klein struggles a bit more. This chapter covers the rise of anti-corporate and anti-branding advertising in response to the encroachment of the multinational. While Klein makes a convincing argument that there are a growing number of activists joining the movement, she makes a few serious omissions. One error is an issue of methodology - many of the anti-branding activists act by appropriation: taking a brand and then twisting or subverting its meaning. This can be used to deliver a stinging indictment of the brand, and can be thought of as leveraging the brands power against itself. Yet what Klein and the other activists fail to consider is the possibility that ANY repetition of the brand, even one that is ostensibly critical, may in fact extend the brands power. I'm reminded of a recent NY Times op-ed (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/27/opi...), that posits that denouncing a message may reinforce it simply by repetition. Klein never considers the fact that brand appropriation may, in fact, be counterproductive. Klein's biggest flaw in "No Logo," however, is her refusal to acknowledge individual responsibility. In fact, in several parts of the book, she chastises activists for veering towards what she calls "consumer-watch finger-wagging." Yet a large part of the problem, as I pointed out at the beginning of this review, is that we have been 100% complicit in this takeover. Corporations can only sell us a lifestyle if we continue to buy it (and buy it and buy it and buy it). If we refuse to buy products made in sweatshops, refuse to succumb to corporate control of dialog, then the power of the multinational will wain - but doing so requires that we ALL take full responsibility for our purchases. Protests and activist design are great, but it's only real lifestyle changes that are going to free us from the power of the brand - a point Klein stops short of making.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    The cover page reads "No Space, No Choice, No Jobs, No Logo" and that's how the book is broken up, into those four sections. It starts off relatively strong, avoiding a number of pitfalls you expect her to get caught up in. Unfortunately, as it progresses it becomes rather uneven, mostly the last section, "No Logo." The section starts off with a ridiculous chapter about "culture jamming," which is essentially the use of graphic design skills to subvert advertising. This is a perfect example of h The cover page reads "No Space, No Choice, No Jobs, No Logo" and that's how the book is broken up, into those four sections. It starts off relatively strong, avoiding a number of pitfalls you expect her to get caught up in. Unfortunately, as it progresses it becomes rather uneven, mostly the last section, "No Logo." The section starts off with a ridiculous chapter about "culture jamming," which is essentially the use of graphic design skills to subvert advertising. This is a perfect example of how she can sometimes come across as a stoned art school girl gushing in a coffee shop about how this ultra-cool hip thing the cool kids are doing is going to save the world. It's a strange contrast to some of her more sober, reality-based commentary. It's worth reading but parts of it may try your patience. That being said, I found some of her (to me) misplaced optimism compelling. I wondered if maybe we Americans aren't too cynical sometimes. Maybe we should be like the Canadians. Of course, Canadians aren't perfect either. It got me wondering though about how a lot of us in the midwest think that people in other parts of the country, especially in the West, tend to be pretty dippy and I couldn't help but think maybe we in the midwest might be too grizzled and world-weary for our own good? Or is it just me? Maybe the whole country is dippy. Maybe vandalizing billboards will put a dent in the corporate oligarchy. I don't think so but it's something to believe in, I suppose, and makes about as much sense as Jesus getting crucified so we can go to heaven, which according to the historian on NPR Christians did not even believe until centuries after Jesus's death. Anyway, I think part of what's going on here is that there are no simple solutions. You can't really propose a solution to the problems discussed in the book in few hundred pages. I mean, you could in general terms, but how will you engage people to get them to focus on something outside of entertainment land? She does seem very conscious of the difficulties. I just get to wondering why she goes overboard gushing about anti-corporate zines and things. Maybe she she didn't want a bleak book, I suppose. I also disagree with her contention that subverting corporate logos can strip them of some of their power. If anything I think it adds a new mystique to the logo and in the long run probably adds more value to the brand. I guess I've mostly talked about the problems with the book. There is value in the book, it just reads like a first book. I think it's pretty clear she'll be remembered for the Shock Doctrine, which is next on my list. I know she has a great capacity for reflectiveness and nuance and I hope she was able to put that to more sustained use over the many pages of The Shock Doctrine...

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