Selling the crisis: British and German advertising industry during the 1970s

Westermeier, Carola Maria (2013). Selling the crisis: British and German advertising industry during the 1970s. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.

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Within Western Europe, the 1970s are usually perceived as a decade of uncertainty and decline, marking a turning point towards 'post-industrial' societies. Economic difficulties and political instability gave rise to a climate of constant crisis. However, this was not the case for the advertising industry. Although it also suffered from cuts in advertising expenditure, the amount of money spent on advertising actually increased throughout the decade. Indeed, it even doubled in Germany. This thesis seeks to show how advertising industries in Germany and Great Britain managed to overcome economic difficulties, changes in consumption patterns and criticism thanks to a burgeoning consumerist movement. By focusing on how advertisers perceived the commercial environment and attempted to influence consumption in the interests of their clients, it becomes clear that advertising is more than just business expenditure. Rather, advertising illustrates how attitudes towards consumption and materialism irrevocably changed within the 'postmodern society', foreshadowing trends that became more generally the norm in the new context of the 1980s.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Department of History
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
D History General and Old World > DD Germany
H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce


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