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New Age Capitalism: Making Money East of Eden Paperback – 27 Apr 2000


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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press (27 April 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812217292
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812217292
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,087,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

"New Age Capitalism reveals the sometimes hilarious ironies and contradictions that come with using the capitalist marketplace as a place to critique capitalism."—Joseph Turow, author of Breaking Up America: Advertisers and the New Media World



"New Age Capitalism represents a new, sophisticated—and in many ways daring—extension of folkloric concerns into the arena where ancient traditions, fads, popular culture, global economics, personal taste, and cultural worldview intersect. . . . Lau's compact book is a clever and helpful contribution to this enterprise."—Western Folklore

Synopsis

The pursuit of health and wellness has become a fundamental and familiar part of everyday life in America. We are surrounded by an enticing world of products, practices, and promotions assuring health and happiness - cereal boxes claim that their contents can reduce the risk of heart disease, bars of aromatherapy soap seek to wash away our stresses, newspapers celebrate the wonders of the latest superfoods and herbal remedies. No longer confined to the domain of Western medicine, suggestions for healthy living often turn to alternatives originating in distant times and places, in cultures very different from our own. Diets from ancient or remote groups are presented as cures for everything from colds to cancer; exercise regimens based on Eastern philosophies are heralded as paths to physical health and spiritual wellbeing.In "New Age Capitalism", Kimberly Lau examines the ideological work that has created this billion-dollar business and allowed "Eastern" and other non-Western traditions to be coopted by Western capitalism.

Extending the orientalist logic to the business of health and wellness, American companies have created a lucrative and competitive market for their products, encouraging consumers to believe that they are making the right choices for personal as well as planetary health. In reality, alternative health practices have been commodified for an American public longing not only for health and wellness but also for authenticity, tradition, and a connection to the cultures of an imagined Edenic past. Although consumers might prefer to buy into "authentic" non-Western therapies, "New Age Capitalism" argues that the market economy makes this goal unattainable.

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Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars 4 reviews
Alla Love
5.0 out of 5 starsSaved me
24 May 2018 - Published on Amazon.com
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hester
1.0 out of 5 starsundertheorized and underanalyzed
9 February 2001 - Published on Amazon.com
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liz wilson
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Marketing of Spa Spirituality
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1.0 out of 5 starsA tepid polemic
19 March 2001 - Published on Amazon.com
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