Advertising Sin and Sickness: The Politics of Alcohol and Tobacco Marketing, 1950-1990
By: Pamela E. Pennock (author)Hardback
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Temperance advocates believed they could eradicate alcohol by persuading consumers to avoid it; prohibitionists put their faith in legislation forbidding its manufacture, transportation, and sale. After the repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment, however, reformers sought a new method of attack - targeting advertising. In "Advertising Sin and Sickness", Pamela E. Pennock documents three distinct periods in the history of the national debate over the regulation of alcohol and tobacco marketing. Tracing the fate of proposed federal policies, she introduces their advocates and opponents, from politicians and religious leaders to scientists and businessmen. In the 1950s, the Woman's Christian Temperance Union and other religious organizations joined hands in an effort to ban all alcohol advertising. They quickly found themselves at odds, however, with an increasingly urbane mainstream American culture. In the 1960s, moralists took backstage to consumer activists and scientific authorities in the campaign to control cigarette advertising and mandate labeling.
Secular and scientific arguments came to dominate policy debates, and the controversy over alcohol marketing during the 1970s and 1980s highlighted the issues of substance abuse, public health, and consumer rights. The politics of alcohol and tobacco advertising reflect profound cultural dilemmas about consumerism and private enterprise, morality and health, scientific authority and the legitimate regulation of commercial speech. Today, the United States continues to face difficult questions about the proper role of the federal government when powerful industries market potentially harmful but undoubtedly popular products.
Pamela E. Pennock is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Michigan - Dearborn.
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- ID: 9780875803685
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