Jodi's Reviews > Ways of Seeing

Ways of Seeing by John Berger
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's review
Nov 11, 2010

really liked it
Read in November, 2010

Excellent book. Especially enjoyed the last chapter on advertising--Berger tells us (in 1972) that material consumption has been turned into a "subsstitute for democracy." He declared that the "choice of what one eats (or wears or drives) takes the place of significant political choice" "helps to mask and compensate for all that is undemocratic with society."

Enjoyed how Berger gives it to us by summarizing the idea of advertising to the fact that we are made to feel unsatisfied with our own lives and we are manipulated to feel envious of our future lives when we'll have said product. I remember being in fourth grade thinking that if only I could get Pearl Drop Tooth Polish then my teeth (which were covered in braces) would be perfect and all my worries over. My Mom laughed at me when I asked if I could have some of the miracle toothpaste and told me not to be so stupid--my teeth would still be awful. How right she was--good lesson to learn young!

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message 1: by Mlg (new) - added it

Mlg This sounds like it would make an excellent addition to our non fiction book club. Thanks for the review!

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