Activity: Talk or presentation › Lecture and oral contribution
This seminar introduces a new way of reading the history of market and consumer research since 1900. Instead of interpreting market and consumer research merely as a response to the needs of commercial actors, like manufacturers and retailers, this seminar will focus on the political ideologies that influenced the making of this professional field in the United States as opposed to Europe. Surprisingly, we find that both American and European market and consumer researchers did not always abide by the ‘ideo-logic’ of neoliberalism and its various predecessors. More often, they used their research practices to promote more social-democratic, at times even socialist, political aims which included consumer protection, education and general socio-economic equality. It might be argued, though, that market and consumer researchers of all ideological proveniences were essentially – to quote Carl Schmitt – political romanticists.