If Coffee Commercials Told the Unvarnished Truth

A new comedy video from Cracked makes a fair point: there’s a lot of bullshit that goes into the marketing of coffee nowadays. Slap the words “organic” and “fair trade” on the product, and everyone feels pretty good about keeping their caffeine addictions going. Several years ago, Slovenian theorist Slavoj Žižek took a closer look at this phenomenon and drew some interesting conclusions about how, within contemporary capitalism, companies like Starbucks have reworked Max Weber’s Protestant Ethic, and found new ways to square our economic and spiritual lives. Starbucks has made it, Žižek notes, so that when we enter their stores, we’re not just buying coffee and being consumers. Rather, we’re buying fair trade and eco-friendly coffee, participating in charitable work, and leaving with a sense of redemption. The animated video is worth a look.

And lest you think marketing coffee has always been a sunny affair, let me turn your attention to this post in our archive: Men In Commercials Being Jerks About Coffee: A Mashup of 1950s & 1960s TV Ads.

Related Content

“The Virtues of Coffee” Explained in 1690 Ad: The Cure for Lethargy, Scurvy, Dropsy, Gout & More

Philosophers Drinking Coffee: The Excessive Habits of Kant, Voltaire & Kierkegaard

The Birth of London’s 1950s Bohemian Coffee Bars Documented in a Vintage 1959 Newsreel

How William S. Burroughs Used the Cut-Up Technique to Shut Down London’s First Espresso Bar (1972)

Good Capitalist Karma: Zizek Animated


by | Permalink | Comments (1) |


Comments (1)
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
  • Ronyjahid says:

    With so many people telling you about all the hazards, you can’t eat or drink anything. You can’t say anything, go anywhere, do anything, visit anyone. BUT, you will live a long life———of absolute misery! Well, I guess I’ll drink a cup of coffee to that.

Leave a Reply

Quantcast