Summary of Capitalism’s New Clothes

Looking for the article?
We have the summary! Get the key insights in just 5 minutes.

Capitalism’s New Clothes summary
Start getting smarter:
or see our plans

Rating

7

Qualities

  • Comprehensive
  • Analytical
  • For Experts

Recommendation

What works and what doesn’t in Shoshana Zuboff’s tome The Age of Surveillance Capitalism? Writing for left-wing magazine The Baffler, science historian Evgeny Morozov evaluates Zuboff’s writing through the lens of rigorous critical inquiry. In his long article, he considers the book on its own merits; in terms of how its proclamations stand up against political, economic and cultural theories; and in comparison with Zuboff’s other books. Morozov brings an authoritative, well-informed (occasionally humorous) voice that’s an excellent complement to the book. His review is also a fascinating stand-alone analysis, appropriate for anyone interested in how the concept of surveillance capitalism applies to the intersection of capitalism, IT and privacy.

About the Author

Evgeny Morozov, PhD, authored The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom and is a contributing editor at The Baffler.

 

Summary

What “Surveillance Capitalism” Entails

Shoshana Zuboff uses the term “surveillance capitalism” to describe the process of giving “social power” to tech firms, which enables them to influence people’s behavior. The “digitization of everything” turns people into subordinates of their smart devices – like their cars, homes, mattresses, toothbrushes and vodka bottles. The regime that drives surveillance capitalism is Big Tech, with Facebook and Google leading the way. Apple is an exception since it’s less driven by the advertising imperative. Zuboff’s book The Age of Surveillance Capitalism grew out of a 2013 newspaper article in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and reflects an evolution of her thought, previously presented in her books In the Age of the Smart Machine (1988) and The Support Economy (2002).

Zuboff skirts the fact that Marxists at Monthly Review first coined the term “surveillance capital.” She herself isn’t a Marxist. She first used the term in 2014, but the roots of her critique go back to the 1970s. Zuboff...


More on this topic

By the same author

To Save Everything, Click Here
8
The Net Delusion
9

Customers who read this summary also read

Nothing Can Stop Google. DuckDuckGo Is Trying Anyway.
8
Targeted Advertising Is Ruining the Internet and Breaking the World
7
The Snowden Legacy
7
You Are the Product
9
Spying on Attica
7
China's New Revolution
8

Related Channels

Comment on this summary