Culture As Weapon: The Art of Influence In Everyday Life

Looks like an excellent public event (invitation details posted at the end) to launch Culture As Weapon: Art and Marketing in the Age of Total Communication by Nato Thompson. The Atlantic have done an interview with him, and here's an excerpt from the intro: 

When it comes to living in a democracy, Nato Thompson argues, nothing affects us more directly and more powerfully than culture. Culture suffuses the world we live in, from TV to music to advertising to sports. And all these things, Thompson writes in his new book, Culture as Weapon, “influence our emotions, our actions, and our very understanding of ourselves as citizens.”

But comprehending how dominant culture has become also means thinking about the ways it can be, and has been, employed to manipulate consumers, by politicians, brands, and other powerful institutions. In Culture as Weapon, Thompson delves into the culture wars of the 1980s, the early origins of public relations and advertising in the early 20th century, how culture became a powerful vehicle for reinventing cities, and how brands associate themselves with causes to shape their own reputations. He looks at how artists have responded to these impulses, and how the emergence of the internet contributed to a new kind of immersion in culture, in which we’re more deeply absorbed in it than ever.

The London discussion has been organised by the gallery A/Political - itself a fascinating (if a little closed-door) project to curate and support "engaged" artists. Details on the graphic below: