In Authentic: The Politics of Ambivalence in a Brand Culture (NYU Press, 2013), Sarah Banet-Weiser scrutinizes the spread of brand culture into other spheres...

In Authentic: The Politics of Ambivalence in a Brand Culture (NYU Press, 2013), Sarah Banet-Weiser scrutinizes the spread of brand culture into other spheres of social life that the market–at least in our imaginations–had left untouched: politics, religion, creativity, and the self. Banet-Weiser observes that the authenticity concept seems to carry more weight in a culture of selling: We have come to expect, and to some extent accept, that authenticity, like everything else, can be trademarked. Through rich case studies–Dove ad campaigns, Facebook self-performance, street art, green activism, and New Age spirituality among them–Authentic identifies the pervasive (and often troubling) ambivalence of branded living.

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