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The century of the self

March 7th, 2009

I have seen today very interesting piece of historical documentary. To my opinion it is the finest documentary yet made, about the way in which psychology was used by business and governments to manipulate people. Made by British documentalist Adam Curtis, shows how Freud’s theories of the unconscious was used to build corporate and political power. What emerges is nothing less than a history of 20th-century social control. It is also about history of mass marketing and PR.

The Century of the Self gives me a deeper look to the roots and methods of modern consumerism, democracy and its implications. As I already seen myself as resistant(not absolutely, but I hope it enough to control my life) to such manipulation. It helped me add some more consistency to my picture of world.

“This series is about how those in power have used Freud’s theories to try and control the dangerous crowd in an age of mass democracy.” – Adam Curtis

This film talks about population controlled by politics not in a conspiracy way which some other pseudo-documentary do. But as normal way what is become so rare in our marketing oriented media.

To many in both politics and business, the triumph of the self is the ultimate expression of democracy, where power has finally moved to the people. Certainly the people may feel they are in charge, but are they really? The Century of the Self tells the untold and sometimes controversial story of the growth of the mass-consumer society in Britain and the United States. How was the all-consuming self created, by whom, and in whose interests?

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