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Consumer Protest: Anticapitalism

  • By: Roberta Sassatelli
  • In: Encyclopedia of Consumer Culture
  • Edited by: Dale Southerton
  • Subject:Sociology of Consumption, Consumer Psychology, Consumer Culture

People often deploy their consumer choices to make their voices heard for a number of global political, humanitarian, or ecological issues. Against traditional critical views of consumption as an alternative to political rebellion, the sphere of consumption can constitute itself as a space for forms of political action. For example, as early as the late-eighteenth century, English women used their consumer power to support abolitionism, notes Kate Davies. Later, at the turn of the twentieth century, the National Consumer Leagues appeared in the United States and were mostly concerned with using manifestations and boycotts on the part of consumers to exert indirect pressure on specific enterprises denounced as both producers and employers. Founded by Florence Kelley and inspired by the Progressive movement, social justice was ...

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