Protest Politics in the Marketplace: Consumer Activism in the Corporate Age [book review]

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Tad Skotnicki, Assistant Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: Nothing conjures the anxieties of affluence like the politics of consumption. Does consumer politics augur the collapse of democratic engagement and public life? Or does it promise to renew democratic participation, rights, and privileges? The scholarship on politics and consumption has tacked between these poles, with every lament begetting an apologia and vice versa. In Protest Politics in the Marketplace, political scientist Caroline Heldman tackles these big questions and affirms the democratic virtues of consumer activism, or marketplace activism, in the corporate age. On balance, Heldman argues that consumer activism has abetted citizen participation and political equality, improved public debate as well as corporate and government accountability, and protected against the erosion of rights and civil liberties. While leaving some important analytical and interpretive questions unanswered, the book helpfully illuminates the relevance of the market to political imaginaries and engagement in the contemporary United States.

Additional Information

Social Forces, Vol. 97, No. 1: e6
Language: English
Date: 2018
consumer activism, book review, boycotts

Email this document to