By John H. Clarke, Janet E Newman, Nick Smith, Elizabeth Vidler, Louise Westmarland
Political, renowned and educational debates have swirled round the proposal of citizen as a client of public providers, with public provider reform more and more geared in the direction of a shopper society. This cutting edge booklet attracts on unique learn with these humans within the front-line of the reforms -staff, managers and clients of public providers - to discover their responses to this flip to consumerism. concentrating on wellbeing and fitness, policing and social care, it vividly brings to lifestyles the contentious and afflicted relationships among govt, companies and users.
Creating Citizen Consumers explores a number of theoretical, political, coverage and perform matters that come up within the shift in the direction of consumerism.It attracts on contemporary controversies approximately selection in public companies to carry them based on the studies and expectancies of a shopper society. It bargains a clean and tough use of well known understandings of the relationships among humans and providers to argue for a version of publicness in accordance with interdependence, recognize and partnership instead of choice.
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Additional info for Creating Citizen-Consumers: Changing Publics and Changing Public Services
Frank Trentmann, writing about the emergence of notions of consumerism in the nineteenth and twentiethcenturies, argues that: Before there could be a popular notion of consumer sovereignty, the consumer had to be cultivated. The consumer as a project took different shape in different traditions – in national economics in Imperial Germany the consumer was appropriated for the project of building a strong community and economy, whereas in Britain it fused into a language of liberal self and citizenship.
A Giddensian view of modernity – and of New Labour as a modernising project – foregrounds the social dynamics of reflexivity and diversity and the political/policy concerns with activation and empowerment. We would also see the dislocation of traditional institutions as a central dynamic, with a decline in deference enabling a greater challenge to established forms of authority. A more complex view of expertise and a more contested view of knowledge would also be part of the field of relationships between individuals and institutions in reflexive modernity.
In our name? The citizen-consumer as governmental project Earlier in this chapter we highlighted the importance of understanding consumerism in the context of particular national formations, and posed the question as to whether New Labour simply represented a continuance of the generic New Right project of neo-liberal governance, or whether it has to be understood as a specific political and governmental project with its own inherent tensions and instabilities. We have identified several ways in which New Labour’s policies drew on, but reworked, other movements and discourses, at the same time as installing a new emphasis on choice supported by an extension of competition between service providers.