The Rise of Mass Advertising in Britain

  • Datum: 11.05.2023
  • Uhrzeit: 16:00 - 18:00
  • Vortragende(r): Anat Rosenberg (Harry Radzyner Law School, Reichmann University Israel)
  • Ort: mpilhlt, Z01
  • Gastgeber: Daniel Damler
  • Kontakt:
The Rise of Mass Advertising in Britain

The emergence of mass advertising disrupted the perceived foundations of modernity. The idea that modern culture was organized by identifiable fields of knowledge, experience, and authority came under strain as advertisers claimed to share values with the era's most prominent fields, including news, art, science, and religiously inflected morality. While cultural boundaries grew blurry, the assumption that the world was becoming progressively disenchanted, and that the capitalist economy was a victory of reason, were undermined as enchanted experiences multiplied with the transformation of everyday environments by advertising.

Drawing on an extensive archive that bridges legal fields and disciplinary divides, Anat Rosenberg examines how contemporaries came to terms with the disruptive impact by mobilizing legal processes, powers, and concepts. Law served to perform the boundary work that maintained contemporaries' sense of field distinctions. Concurrently, it also served to disavow the role of enchantment in commercial culture, thus preserving the view of modernity-as-disenchantment.

The talk draws on Anat Rosenberg's recent book, The Rise of Mass Advertising: Law, Enchantment and the Cultural Boundaries of British Modernity (Oxford University Press, 2022), which offers a first cultural legal history of the rise of mass advertising c.1840-1914, and its legal shaping.

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