“This profound and powerful book is replete with perceptive insights and persuasive arguments. Authentic ™ reveals how the pervasiveness of branding culture requires us to rethink our investments in authenticity and our understandings of citizenship and social membership. Banet-Weiser offers us the first fully theorized analysis of how the hegemony of branding culture and the eclipse of typographic culture by digital culture combine to make us fundamentally new kinds of social subjects.”
—George Lipsitz, author of Time Passages
"We all search for spaces where we can express ourselves or find others we value, but what happens when all those spaces are already aligned by the self-interested productivity of brands? No one has followed those searches more attentively than Sarah Banet-Weiser. As inherited politics falters, Banet-Weiser's major new book is an indispensable guide to an ambivalent future."
—Nick Couldry, author of Why Voice Matters: Culture and Politics After Neoliberalism
“In this lively and penetrating analysis of the ubiquity and consequences of non-stop branding in the 21st century, Sarah Banet-Weiser pushes us to think beyond the false distinctions between consumer culture on the one hand and ‘authenticity’ on the other, and instead to contemplate what is at stake in living in branded cultures—especially for our very core identities and values. A stimulating, smart, and extremely timely book.”
—Susan J. Douglas, University of Michigan and author of The Rise of Enlightened Sexism
"Authentic by Sarah Banet-Weiser, is an interesting book, because it makes it its business to find the halfway point between this so-called infantilizing commerce and the world of the authentic and real—thus that 'ambivalence.'"
"Each chapter stands on its own, making this a useful text to use in classroom."
"Authentic tells a powerful story: one providing a persuasive argument about the dominant mode that neoliberalism is taking in and through brand culture, while keeping open a vivid sense of the different and variegated cultural formations that are simultaneously being produced. This is not an easy task, but Banet-Weiser pulls it off well, managing to combine historical understanding with political-economic savvy and perceptive cultural analysis. Authentic is a sophisticated and lively read that registers the variegated character and generative potential of branding, while simultaneously recognizing how “the normativity of brand cultures more often than not reinscribes people back within neoliberal capitalist discourse rather than empower them to challenge or disrupt capitalism” (p. 221)."
—International Journal of Communication
“Banet-Weiser success in her important project to show that branding is much more than commodification or marketing—it is a co-production of culture, and in dismissing it we risk dismissing a pervasive and essential set of discourses on contemporary society.”
—Media International Australia
"A sophisticated and lively read that registers the variegated character and generative potential of branding."
—International Journal of Communications