DC Public Library System

Pushing cool, big tobacco, racial marketing, and the untold story of the menthol cigarette, Keith Wailoo

Label
Pushing cool, big tobacco, racial marketing, and the untold story of the menthol cigarette, Keith Wailoo
Language
eng
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 357-376) and index
Illustrations
illustrations
Index
index present
Literary Form
non fiction
Main title
Pushing cool
Nature of contents
bibliography
Oclc number
1235901895
Responsibility statement
Keith Wailoo
Sub title
big tobacco, racial marketing, and the untold story of the menthol cigarette
Summary
In the 1930s, menthols were 3% of the smoking market but by the 1970s, they accounted for a quarter and climbing. What explains this rise? Moreover, how did it happen that early into the new millennium an estimated 75% of Black smokers, compared to 30% of white smokers, chose menthol brands? Pushing Cool covers the contentious history of the menthol cigarette. It is a story steeped in racial and gendered marketing and revealing of the "endless inventiveness of capitalism." This is the first book to tell the menthol story, and in doing so illuminates broader stories of race, gender, consumerism, and the (scientific?) shaping of preferences and tastes by business in modern America. Pushing Cool dives deep into the ways in which systemic disparities across race are fostered by targeted consumer marketing, among other things. Ten years ago, when Congress banned flavored cigarettes as illegitimate enticements to encourage youth smoking, menthol cigarettes were also slated to be banned. Although menthol smoking first emerged in the twentieth century having little to do with race, today Black smokers overwhelmingly smoke menthol brands such as Kool, Salem, and Newport, and calls to prohibit their circulation hinge on a history of the industry's targeted racial marketing. But menthols escaped the ban and remain legal largely because of the effort of several powerful Black Congressmen. To ban menthols, they insisted, was discriminatory against Black preferences. In five chapters spanning a century, Pushing Cool reveals how this story of Black affinity with menthol was crafted-how tobacco companies, social researchers, and marketers, as well as Black lawmakers and civic groups like the NAACP, helped the industry create a powerful narrative that has withstood efforts to ban menthol smoking to this day.--, Provided by publisher
Table Of Contents
Prologue: Pushers in the city of my youth -- Introduction : The crooked man: influence, exploitation, and menthol's expanding web -- 1. Selling the menthol sensation -- 2. For people susceptible to cancer anxiety -- 3. Building a Black franchise -- 4. Urban hustles and suburban dreams -- 5. Uptown's aftertaste -- Conclusion : Deception by design: the long road to "I can't breathe."
resource.variantTitle
Big Tobacco, racial marketing, and the untold story of the menthol cigarette
Classification
Genre
Content
Mapped to