Symphony Kwong (996285096)
GGRC45H3 t Week 4-5, Lecture 3-4, Lecture Notes
Wednesday, February 2, 9, 2011
Film Screening: No Logo (Naomi Klein)
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No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies
A book by Canadian author Naomi Klein. First published by Knopf Canada in January 2000, shortly after
the 1999 WTO Ministerial Conference protests in Seattle had generated media attention around such
issues, it became one of the most influential books about the anti-globalization movement and an
The book focuses on branding, and often makes connections with the anti-globalization movement.
Throughout the 4 parts ("No Space", "No Choice", "No Jobs", and "No Logo"), Klein writes about issues
such as sweatshops in the Americas and Asia, culture jamming, corporate censorship, and Reclaim the
Streets. She pays special attention to the deeds and misdeeds of Nike, The Gap, McDonald's, Shell, and
Microsoft t and of their lawyers, contractors, and advertising agencies. Many of the ideas in Klein's
book derive from the influence of the Situationists, an art/political group founded in the late 1950s.
However, while globalization appears frequently as a recurring theme, Klein rarely addresses the topic
of globalization itself, and usually indirectly.
The book is divided into four sections: "No Space", "No Choice", "No Jobs", and "No Logo". The first
three deal with the negative effects of brand-oriented corporate activity, while the fourth discusses
various methods people have taken in order to fight back.
The book begins by tracing the history of brands. Klein argues that there has been a shift in the usage of
branding. Early examples of brands were often used to put a recognizable face on factory-produced
products. These slowly gave way to the idea of selling lifestyles. According to Klein, in response to an
economic crash in the 1980s, corporations began to seriously rethink their approach to marketing, and
began to target the youth demographic, as opposed to the baby boomers, who had previously been
considered a much more valuable segment.
The book discusses how brand names such as Nike or Pepsi expanded beyond the mere products which
bore their names, and how these names and logos began to appear everywhere. As this happened, the
brands' obsession with the youth market drove them to further associate themselves with whatever the
youth considered "cool". Along the way, the brands attempted to have their names associated with
everything from movie stars and athletes to grassroots social movements.
Klein argues that large multinational corporations consider the marketing of a brand name to be more
important than the actual manufacture of products; this theme recurs in the book and Klein suggests
that it helps explain the shift to production in Third World countries in such industries as clothing,
footwear, and computer hardware.
This section also looks at ways in which brands have "muscled" their presence into the school system,
and how in doing so, they have pipelined advertisements into the schools, and have used their position
to gather information about the students. Klein argues that this is part of a trend toward targeting
younger and younger consumers.