Shelves: non-fiction , consumption Really this was more of a 2. Taking it as what it is though, some of her analysis is rather prescient -- she foretells the memoir craze and the rise of Super Sweet Sixteens pretty accurately. You have to think she could expand Really this was more of a 2. You have to think she could expand this now with a second volume looking at the rise of both web-based marketing "friending" brands on Facebook and Twitter and self-marketing "street style" websites, MySpace, really anything teens do online. My biggest issue with this book though was my goodness did it need a better copy editor -- it was so unbelievably rife with copy errors e.
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Quart explaining the different pressures that society forces on young teens was very eye opening. Quart sparked a lot of childhood memories when explaining brand identification and the pressures peers put on each other. One memory that really sticks out is walking through the mall with my mom and buying clothes for the start of seventh grade.
Looking back made me realize how silly I was, but I understand why I felt this way. Quart explains how marketers bombarde magazines, commercials, billboards, etc with their advertisements. Back in seventh grade, Abercrombie was cool. Everyone wanted to be one of those sexy models in their ads. So much of our daily lives has media exposure that its hard not to look, especially at young ages when your open to almost anything.
Honestly what Quart describes really works. It did make me a little disheartened that something I really enjoy is getting provoked by marketers but now I feel a lot more aware and will try to not let them get to me. Mean Girls came out after this book was written but it perfectly fits into the mold these movies have created and further shows the power this genre holds. What has made these movies so popular and why were they all a must see when they came out? First, each of these movies has a popular crowd and one of these popular people has a problem.
So I am convinced that the first thing you need to make a blockbuster movie is attractive people. Second you need them to wear revealing or designer clothes. This is showcased in Bring It On when basically all they wear throughout the movie is revealing cheering outfits and workout wear. The Third aspect is particularly showcased within these films because of The Breakfast Club and the infamous Ally Sheedy transformation at the end.
This aspect is the makeover. I never caught on to this until reading this chapter. Each of these movies has the main character go through some sort of change and of course the change only makes them better looking and more popular. This is the key element when trying to decipher what the value is amongst these movies.
What is really going on here when you strip the stars of their makeup, clothes, and posh attitudes? This is what motivates them throughout the entire movie and in fact is what gets them into most of their trouble. Also popularity is the one thing that they will throw away everything for.
These movies get away with a value like this because there is so much covering it up. Before reading this chapter I pictured these movies as great, some even as a must see. I once thought Elle Woods in Legally Blonde was courageous, it made me want to be a lawyer.
But now I realize that I only looked at her this way because she was popular and she needed to maintain her popularity by going to law school. What these movies have are good looking people. In turn because their hot they get away with a lot more. This is because Kant states that its not whose doing it but what the action is in itself.
Now all you have are their actions trying to uphold their value. Since their value is popularity most of their actions are aimed towards how to become more popular. This is the most apparent in Mean Girls and the lead Lindsay Lohan.
Taking Lindsay Lohan out of the picture and only reading the script it is very apparent that the main character Cady Heron is a liar. All of these lies are aimed towards trying to make herself more popular than Regina George. At the end Cady gets sort of a wake up call but everything still comes together for her. When this movie came out it was huge; it was all over TV, the internet, and in school.
For this movie to have such a big opening I know it impacted alot of teenagers and I know it influenced them to do what ever it takes to be popular.
These movies have created a society of young adults that only care what others think of them and completely twisting their feelings regarding themselves. All of them throughout the movie try to better themselves, sometimes through buying designer clothes, wearing makeup, or the extreme of going to law school.
The conceited nature in all of these characters makes the viewers very aware that this is acceptable. None of these movies help others in a way that is selfless. The characters loyalties also extends to their brand names they use, but I feel that this loyalty is only to uphold their loyalty to themselves because the brand names make them cooler. I feel that these movies have been a catalyst for plastic surgery.
When someone gets plastic surgery it is to better themselves. Most of the characters go to the mall to make themself feel better or they start putting on makeup so their peers like them more. The characters even backstab each other to make themself more popular. I feel that these story lines not only increase plastic surgery but also fights in school. I feel like students pay more attention to what each other are doing than the school work.
Young minds are easily influenced and its especially hard to erase the well put together images that these movies create. Most teenagers actions are completely mimicking the main characters of these movies and honestly I feel like its not their fault, especially because I used to do the same thing. These movies also glorify the actions that teenagers are supposed to be learning not to do.
The bottom line is teenagers need to be educated on what is right and wrong. I thought this section was a nice conclusion to the first half because it gave me hope that some students do think for themselves.
It actually made me really proud that some had the courage to stand up to their own principles and faculties. I thought it was really cruel the way they were teased by their peers. When did conforming start to be cool? I also has no idea about students going to schools with no grading system.
I think this is great and I really liked the quirky concepts that the home schooled students had. I thought that the contrast between their outlook on schools and the Logo U chapter was very appealing.
Both sides were extremes and I being in the middle realized how silly they both were being. I think kids should be enrolled in school because they get interaction with other kids their own age. Since these unschoolers need to go out into the world eventually they will have to conform one way or another.
Quart also explains the punk scene. I think that doing your own thing. Especially when this rebelliousness only lasts during the youth years. Which is the complete opposite of the blockbuster movie value, popularity.
I have to give both the unschoolers and punks credit because in a world where mostly everyone wants to be Alicia Silverstone or Freddie Prince Jr. I feel that in alot of ways its easier to just conform and not go against the grain. When everyone else goes off to school the unschoolers stay home and do it themselves. On the other hand the punks may go to school but they do their own look, their own music, their own lifestyle; which completely contradicts the mainstream preppy is cool mantra.
In a lot of ways these kids are going to turn out as better adults. This is because they will be better parents. I feel strongly about this because my parents were punk like in a lot of ways when they were young.
Hippie and punk are basically the same thing except two different generations labeled it with different names. My parents were always telling me to be myself, and as a public school student I feel this took some pressure off of growing up.
I knew that they would back me no matter what. This was completely contradicting what my friends parents were saying and it took a lot of anxiety off of my shoulders when acceptance letters came in.
I think this because unschooled kids look at schooled kids as different and by them not wanting to be in a clique they have created their own. Through the home schooled kids i have known, they told me how they would meet other unschoolers and would create their own groups within that. So actually they are forming what they tried to avoid. For the punk kids they have their own loyalty to each other. It was very apparent in my high school because they would always walk together in the hallways and smoke cigarettes in large groups on the curb.
No one bothered them but they made it very obvious they were their own group and they all identified with each other. She made each group sound very independent but in fact they are dependent within each other.
The utility principle emphasizes the outcome. The outcome that both groups want is to not have a mainstream. I feel that both groups have a desirable end in mind. The punk kids, especially just want to do their own thing. Their basement concerts show this because they are just trying to have fun, theirs no marketing involved, no celebrities, just kids in a band. I have gone to a few local shows like this and its a completely different vibe than at a mainstream high profile band.
The local shows shows the joy of music with out all of the fluff the mainstream music throws in. Unbranded showed me that it is possible to live within this society and not be lured into everything you see.
These kids show how you can think for yourself and do what you want. All of my life I have been a basically mainstream person. At times while reading this book I felt like I was completely brainwashed. Communication is defiantly what kept me grounded in my household and I plan on sharing that with my children as well.
New York: Basic Books.
Branded by Alissa Quart
Branded: The Buying and Selling of Teenagers