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Comment: Publisher: Knopf Canada
Date of Publication: 2000
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Description: Publisher: Knopf Canada, Date Published: 2000, Size: 24 x 19 x 3.4 cm, Binding: hardcover, Stated First Edition. Ex-Library copy with stamps, sticker, pouch and protective cover. Shallow dings on mylar cover, spine is lightly cocked, shelfwear on lower edge of book cover, one section of 6 pages of the Acknowledgement is loose but present, otherwise clean, unmarked, tight.
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No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies Hardcover – Dec 7 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Canada; 1st ed edition (Dec 7 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067697130X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0676971309
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 18.6 x 3.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #765,743 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

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We live in an era where image is nearly everything, where the proliferation of brand-name culture has created, to take one hyperbolic example from Naomi Klein's No Logo, "walking, talking, life-sized Tommy [Hilfiger] dolls, mummified in fully branded Tommy worlds." Brand identities are even flourishing online, she notes--and for some retailers, perhaps best of all online: "Liberated from the real-world burdens of stores and product manufacturing, these brands are free to soar, less as the disseminators of goods or services than as collective hallucinations."

In No Logo, Klein patiently demonstrates, step by step, how brands have become ubiquitous, not just in media and on the street but increasingly in the schools as well. (The controversy over advertiser-sponsored Channel One may be old hat, but many readers will be surprised to learn about ads in school lavatories and exclusive concessions in school cafeterias.) The global companies claim to support diversity, but their version of "corporate multiculturalism" is merely intended to create more buying options for consumers. When Klein talks about how easy it is for retailers like Wal-Mart and Blockbuster to "censor" the contents of videotapes and albums, she also considers the role corporate conglomeration plays in the process. How much would one expect Paramount Pictures, for example, to protest against Blockbuster's policies, given that they're both divisions of Viacom?

Klein also looks at the workers who keep these companies running, most of whom never share in any of the great rewards. The president of Borders, when asked whether the bookstore chain could pay its clerks a "living wage," wrote that "while the concept is romantically appealing, it ignores the practicalities and realities of our business environment." Those clerks should probably just be grateful they're not stuck in an Asian sweatshop, making pennies an hour to produce Nike sneakers or other must-have fashion items. Klein also discusses at some length the tactic of hiring "permatemps" who can do most of the work and receive few, if any, benefits like health care, paid vacations, or stock options. While many workers are glad to be part of the "Free Agent Nation," observers note that, particularly in the high-tech industry, such policies make it increasingly difficult to organize workers and advocate for change.

But resistance is growing, and the backlash against the brands has set in. Street-level education programs have taught kids in the inner cities, for example, not only about Nike's abusive labor practices but about the astronomical markup in their prices. Boycotts have commenced: as one urban teen put it, "Nike, we made you. We can break you." But there's more to the revolution, as Klein optimistically recounts: "Ethical shareholders, culture jammers, street reclaimers, McUnion organizers, human-rights hacktivists, school-logo fighters and Internet corporate watchdogs are at the early stages of demanding a citizen-centered alternative to the international rule of the brands ... as global, and as capable of coordinated action, as the multinational corporations it seeks to subvert." No Logo is a comprehensive account of what the global economy has wrought and the actions taking place to thwart it. --Ron Hogan --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

In the global economy, all the world's a marketing opportunity. From this elemental premise, freelance journalist and Toronto Star columnist Klein methodically builds an angry and funny case against branding in general and several large North American companies in particular, notably Gap, Microsoft and Starbucks. Looking around her, Klein finds that the breathless promise of the information ageAthat it would be a time of consumer choice and interactive communicationAhas not materialized. Instead, huge corporations that present themselves as lifestyle purveyors rather than mere product manufacturers dominate the airwaves, physical space and cyberspace. Worse, Klein argues, these companies have harmed not just the culture but also workersAand not just in the Third World but also in the U.S., where companies rely on temps because they'd rather invest in marketing than in labor. In the latter sections, Klein describes a growing backlash embodied by the guerrilla group Reclaim the Streets, which turns busy intersections into spaces for picnics and political protest. Her tour of the branded world is rife with many perverse examples of how corporate names penetrate all aspects of life (who knew there was a K-Mart Chair of Marketing at Wayne State University?). Mixing an activist's passion with sophisticated cultural commentary, Klein delivers some elegant formulations: "Free speech is meaningless if the commercial cacophony has risen to the point where no one can hear you." Charts and graphs not seen by PW. Agent, Westwood Creative Artists. (Jan.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Magnus Lindkvist on Sept. 20 2000
Format: Hardcover
Abandon all hope ye who enter here. Naomi Klein is one skilled writer and you can only thank some higher being that she has used her intellectual wit and analytical persistence to combat multi-million dollar companies as opposed to verbally carpet-bombing innocent bystanders such as uncovering journalists like herself. Just like her compadre in anti-corporate crusading, Michael Moore, Klein saves little ammo, let alone love, trust or respect, for anything ending in "Inc." and operating in anything closely resembling services or other low skilled labour areas. "These companies are our enemies" is a central message of this book and one that is continuously ground into the reader in various shapes, lest we not forget it. In terms of execution, No Logo leaves little to wish for. Well-written, footnoted and well-researched within the area of focus, the book takes us through the areas of society which have been permeated by the greedy ghouls of money-grubbing behemoths over the last decades. No stone is left unturned; education, the service sector, manufacturing, media, and one cannot help but wonder what the text will do to the paranoid reader since basically anything but breathing may be "giving in" to the evil mongers. If you are the accusatory type, and let's face it, most of us enjoy a good fights, especially one that is all about kicking the butt of the rich and scoring a few points for the ordinary, unknowing everyman of Americana, No Logo will not disappoint. That is also where the book runs into trouble. It is guilty of exactly the same phenomenon that most anti-establishment groups suffer from today: myopia and anger for anger's sake.Read more ›
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jameel on May 3 2001
Format: Paperback
Whether you're a high schooler just taking interest in the plight of today's Multinational Corporations, or a member of the black-bloc fighting the front lines in Quebec City, this book is a must read. Klein takes aim at the brand phenomenon by dividing her book into four effective parts; NO SPACE, NO CHOICE, NO JOBS, and NO LOGO, going deep into the brief, yet storied history of the brand phenomenon, telling us why "superbrand" corporations dominate our economy today. Klein has basically taken everything you need to know about the anti-corporate movement, sprinkled it with some personal experience and great writing style, and has jammed it into one book that needs to be read by anyone even slightly concerned with the growing dominance of today's Multinational Corporations. While the book is quite lengthy and tends to get quite extensive in terms of detail, her anecdotal use is magnificent. The use of superbrand corporations in those anecdotes, such as McDonalds, Wal-Mart and Nike will keep the average reader interested, instead of the theory x/theory y business which I tend to find quite tedious to read. It will be well worth it to invest your time in reading this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cassandra on Oct. 26 2001
Format: Paperback
Pro-globalization or anti-globalization? Do we have to choose? This seems to be the central question, & this question is being discussed & looked at from all sorts of different angles, the last couple of years.
I have a good friend who is an anti-globalization activist. He also happens to be a communist, & has been going to all the big protests: his last one was in Genoa. I, on the other hand, haven't joined him in these protests, so far. It's not that I don't agree with much of what he's saying. It's just that I disagree with many of the means used to achieve the goal. I also disagree with the "them: bad, us: good" mentality. I find it very simplistic.
My friend & I have been having long, heated discussions, & we always seem to find common ground on some things...we also always disagree on other things. The important thing is that we always DISCUSS these things & try to see the other's point of view. This is one thing that made me skeptical about Naomi Klein's book. Where is the discussion? Where are the arguments that others use? It's a well known fact that to properly fight an opinion differing from your own, you have to really know a lot about this other opinion. You have to respect it, listen to it, & THEN fight it.
There are two ways to argue a point: you either start from a basic axiom which you want to defend, & find everything you can, in order to defend it. This, in my opinion, is a lot like religion: you either believe or you don't. Naomi Klein deeply, passionately believes in anti-globalization: so she gathers all arguments that support her view. These arguments are persuasive, & some of them are definitely fair ones. But I think this way of arguing is wrong, it's deeply flawed.
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Format: Paperback
I picked up author Naomi Klein's book on a whim, after seeing it on sale at Amazon.ca. Thinking that it may give me some insight about the annoying protesters that I always hear about whenever there's some major world leaders conference, I brought it to the front and purchased it. I was pleasantly surprised by my purchase.
I've always been an anti-logo person. I wouldn't on my life be caught in a Tommy Hilfiger shirt, or GAP jeans, or even Nike shoes. I also know that personally, I am starting to find the loss of our public space and unbranded areas in my urban setting to be quite offensive. What <b>No Logo</b> did for me, was to help me look deep into these corporations mindsets, to understand what is happening, and figure out exactly what is wrong with these aggressive tactics, and the best means to channel the rage I have against these multinationals.
The book is very well researched, and it is written in a very easy-to-read manner. The ideas flow nicely one into the other, and there are a lot of ideas explored in this book, while more times than not both sides of an argument are presented.
There were times, however, were the author uses the book as her own personal platform for other issues she seems to feel strongly about. From her feminist views to the ones rights for Jewish Lesbians, I sometimes felt that her rants had no place in the book. But these were pretty minimal, and easily overlooked.
During the course of the book, I found myself wondering what I could do to help in many situations, and there are definitely answers to these questions. I was also pleased that these answers didn't come in the form of promoting the radical protests that a lot of boringly average middle-class kids with nothing better to do seem to have embraced.
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