“Stephen Kline’s study of the politics of risk discourse and the globesity “epidemic” takes us beyond the tired reliance on moral panics and sanctimonious finger waving by demonstrating how a thoughtful, deft analysis of social problems can open up possibilities of new approaches and ways of seeing children’s consumer empowerment.”
— Daniel Thomas Cook, Department of Childhood Studies, Rutgers University, USA
“[This] book provides a richly detailed historical perspective, which sets the present debates about food marketing in context through a meticulous and wide-ranging scholarship. In Kline’s hands the “Globesity epidemic” becomes a window onto a much larger scene where parents and children need to navigate a sensible take on a vast array of personal and risky choices, while being surrounded on all sides by the competing pressures of commercial interests and government policy responses.”
— William Leiss, University of Ottawa, Canada
“Stephen Kline has an aptitude for provoking us to look at children’s consumerism in a different way as he unpacks the complex interplay between food marketing, family lifestyle and the neoliberal marketplace. Based on sound theory and original empirical work this book offers a fresh perspective on the medicalized discourses on globesity, forcing us to rethink our moral panic about children’s time spent in front of the TV screen.”
— David Marshall, Professor of Marketing and Consumer Behaviour, University of Edinburgh Business School, UK
The growing public awareness of lifestyle risks associated with children’s consumer empowerment is at the heart of this book which uses a comparative news analysis to compare the discursive politics surrounding the ‘globesity pandemic’ in North America and the UK. Focusing on the role that epidemiological advocacy played in galvanizing moral panic about the weight gain in child populations, this study examines how this medicalization of lifestyle choices re-ignited deeply held public debates about children’s commercial TV and its disturbance of patterns of domestic consumption. The globesity pandemic therefore renewed one of the most profound challenges to neoliberalism that exists – the vulnerable child consumer. Exploring empirically children’s special status as ‘vulnerable’ consumers, this book provides new evidence of both the systemic bias created by food marketing in the US and the UK, as well as the processes through which marketing comes to influence children’s discretionary choices in the context of branding and parental mitigation of lifestyle risk taking.
Stephen Kline is Professor of Communication at Simon Fraser University, Canada and Director of the Media Analysis Laboratory. His previous publications include Social Communication in Advertising, Out of the Garden, Digital Play, and Researching Audiences.
Posted: Sunday, January 30th, 2011 @ 3:00 pm
Categories: Kline, Stephen.
Tags: 2010 Titles.
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