Captains Of Consciousness: Conformity in Workforce &Consumerism
Stuart Ewen's Captains of Consciousness depicts the American people, as a
class of malleable work force who must earn a living by selling their
labor, from the beginning of industrialization till the 1930s. Initially
capitalism is characterized with a source of ideas of progress and
development measured by the changes of the machine. Industrialization in
reality is the American people serving the corporations as work slaves for
the purpose of an efficient mass production. Any who oppose were dealt by
legislation and military use to insure perpetuation of bourgeois. (Pg 7)
Sometime after World War I corporations were faced with high amounts of
anti-capitalist sentiments. This caused a transition for corporations to
view the workforce as "citizens" than just "wheel horses" or machines. So
called "welfare programs" trained people to become better workers in order
to assimilate into industry and work more diligently.
(Pg 15) Over time
there was a large amount of production exceeding the consumption.
Industries needed to give the American people capital and the desire to
consume. At this point "citizen" became "consumer" out of necessity.
Business resolved to increase wages and leisure time to hopefully increase
consumption. In order to increase the market corporations began to focus
on advertising, which is a communication of ideas and desires on products
to the unsuspecting public. Advertisers sought to attract the largest
audiences through psychology techniques such as the individual as the
object of continual and harsh social scrutiny. Advertising demanded a
momentary involvement of consumption it hope for a life style to
ameliorate social and personal status. (Pg 37)
Advertisement consciously and subconsciously are everywhere in today's
society. It is the main way corporations can display the product to the
audience. Ewen's was correct that corporations are Captains of...