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Pink Ribbons, Inc.: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy 1st Edition

12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0816648986
ISBN-10: 0816648980
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The pink ribbon has come to symbolize efforts to find a cure for breast cancer. But it has also become a powerful symbol for corporate philanthropy, boosting the image of corporations, that promote products from yogurt to cars, slicing off a portion of proceeds to support breast cancer research. King, a women's health issues scholar, explores the phenomenal growth of Pink Ribbons Inc.; the annual massing for the Susan G. Komen Foundation's Race for the Cure 5K runs; and other high-profile events with huge corporate sponsorships. However admirable the effort to find a cure, King argues that it overwhelms efforts to learn how and why women get breast cancer and how it can be prevented. Prevention efforts could help more low-income women who lack the means to pay for treatment. King examines the history of philanthropy and how breast cancer became such a prominent cause, garnering far more support and publicity than other diseases, demonstrating the ability of American women to flex their political and economic muscle on behalf of an important cause. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Univ Of Minnesota Press; 1 edition (August 22, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0816648980
  • ISBN-13: 978-0816648986
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,273,628 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Samantha King is associate professor of physical and health education and women's studies at Queen's University in Kingston, Ohio.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By M. Jaye on December 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Pink Ribbons, Inc. is an excellent overview of breast cancer philanthrophy's relationship to breast cancer research politics. As an epidemiology graduate student, most of the people I know with criticisms of current breast cancer research agendas are medical researchers. This book gave me valuable insights into why we have such a difficult time obtaining grants to research the correlation between environmental toxins and breast cancer.

However, because it appears to be written for academics who specialize in breast cancer history, it glosses over the social and political context that these changes are occurring in. Anyone interested in this book should read Barron H. Lerner's The Breast Cancer Wars: Hope, Fear, and the Pursuit of a Cure in Twentieth-Century America or Robert Aronowitz's Unnatural History: Breast Cancer and American Society (Cambridge Studies in the History of Medicine) before reading this.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By M on October 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This documentary, based on Samantha King's Pink Ribbons Inc., was produced by Ravida Din, directed by Lea Pool, and written by Patricia Kearns, Nancy Guerin, Pool. Readers can look up more specifics. The reviews are excellent for this National Film Board of Canada release.

I've had King's excellent book for years, and yet I am surprised that I never got around to writing a review here, but attribute that omission to constantly referencing the book in the many articles, letters to editors, legislators, businesses, medical organizations, "pink" organizations, etc., I have sent in an attempt to remove the pink fog from the horrendous status of care for breast health and breast diseases.

I firmly believe that what King presents effects every single aspect of the care, or lack of care, women receive, as the more "pink," "feel-good," "infantilization," and all the rest of it that is allowed to numb and dumb. I grant that a small percentage of men get breast cancer, but I will not diminish the fact of gender-based disease by using the ubquitious, "people" when talking about breast cancer).

The big "K" has it's registered trademark. I thought of a new one today -- just popped into my mind after seeing a comic strip, no less, that was all about "pink." Caveat -- it's black humor. Here it is:
"Breast cancer for women, not for profit."

As to King's book being too academic - any woman who has had to deal with breast anomalies - learns so much about medicine, and the politics of medicine, than she might well be granted an honorary degree. And, having a very average brain, assure everyone that her writings, and the message, were crystal clear to me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ashley N. Mack on December 26, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great study of the neoliberalization of activism and politics. If you are interested in how neoliberal discourses have come to change our orientation towards public life, this is a great book, whether or not you are interested in breast cancer politics.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Baxter on December 24, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Think Before You Pink" - next time you are at the grocery store and the ask you if you want to donate to Breast Cancer "Awareness" tell them you are already "aware" - and then suggest this book - quite the eye opener.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pooja Kiran Patel on May 26, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Liked how it illuminates the different aspects health movements and initiatives. How these initiatives are exploited and used by companies to make profits
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Angelia R. Lee on January 18, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
it will change a lot of peoples minds on breast cancer and runs and plastics...just everything you are given a large amount of true information....exciyy
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