12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Interesting examination of consumer culture,
By A Customer
This review is from: Branded: The Buying And Selling Of Teenagers (Hardcover)
Quart does an excellent job of disecting the corporate world's exploitation of children and teenagers. This book could have been just another indictment against advertising, but Quart examines multiple aspects of brand-mania. I especially liked how she includes a chapter on "brand-name" colleges and universities (this is not just about sneakers and jeans, folks). I do have a few criticisms. As some other reviewers pointed out, she mostly interviews upper class teens. Young folks who can't afford to buy Gucci and Prada won't see themselves in this book. Quart also engages in some rather insulting handwringing over the poor innocent children. The chapter on teen authors is especially illustrative of this condenscending mindset. It's clear that Quart believes that it is wrong for a 17 year old to commoditize him/herself in order to sell books, but does that mean that it is okay for a 37 year old to do the same thing? Adults, including parents, have embraced consumer culture. Quart's own interviews reveal this multiple times, yet she confines her analysis to the politically safe idea that teens are unique in their immersion in brand culture. Despite the moral panic tone, I recommend this book for Quart's dissection of consumerism and how it has penetrated so many aspects of our lives.