FINAL CFP: Shopping for Change: Consumer Activism in North American History (edited collection)
Shopping for Change: Consumer Activism in North American History
Editors: Louis Hyman (Cornell University) and Joseph Tohill (York University)
Deadline May 11, 2013
FINAL CALL FOR PAPERS:
We invite proposals from academics and activists for a collection of essays, Shopping for Change: Consumer Activism in North American History, that will bring together different historical and contemporary perspectives on consumer activism or political consumerism in the United States and Canada between the turn of the twentieth century and the present.
We are seeking between fifteen and twenty original short essays of 4,000–6,000 words each examining historical and contemporary political consumerism. Essays should be written in an accessible tone and style aimed at a readership that will include academics, activist, and the informed public.
Since at least the early twentieth century, North Americans have engaged in individual and collective action as consumers to fight corporate malfeasance, to influence legislators, and to assert consumers’ rights. Yet being a consumer is more often a social practice than a social identity, and forms of consumer activism—from boycotts to buycotts—have been central to some of the most important struggles for social justice, like civil rights, trade unionism, and anti-globalization, anti-child labor, and anti-sweatshop activism.
Our collection seeks to shed light on contemporary debates and questions about the effectiveness of consumer activism in making social change. How effective has political consumerist action been historically? What are the boundaries on and possibilities for political consumerism in bringing about greater social justice? What lessons from the past can we apply to present and future activism?
Topics of interest include (but are not limited to):
• historical and/or theoretical overviews of consumer activism in its many forms
• international boycotts (against Nazism, Nestle, South-African apartheid, etc)
• consumer activism in social justice movements (black civil rights, La causa, gay rights, etc.)
• campaigns for passage of consumer representation and protection legislation (pure food and drug laws, government consumer agencies, product safety and truth-in-advertising regulations)
• buycotts (white label, union label, buy American and buy Canadian campaigns)
• resistance to collective consumer action by corporate and other interests
• contemporary movements (Fair trade, Green Consumerism, corporate social responsibility, socially responsible investing)
• political consumerism and gender, class, race, and sexuality
Contributions that consider consumer activism in a transnational or comparative context are especially encouraged. Shopping for Change is under contract with Between the Lines Press, and is being considered by leading American academic publishers.
The deadline to submit proposals is May 11, 2013.
Proposals should include a 500 word abstract, one page CV (or resumé), and list of any previous publications. Please direct proposals or inquiries regarding the collection to Dr. Joseph Tohill firstname.lastname@example.org. (Accepted authors must submit completed articles by October 15, 2013, and the collection will be published in 2014.)
Dr. Joseph Tohill
Department of History
Toronto, ON, Canada
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