Can't Buy My Love

Can’t Buy My Love is the paperback edition of Deadly Persuasion: Why Women and Girls Must Fight the Addictive Power of Advertising, published in hardback in 1999. Many advertisements these days make us feel as if we have an intimate, even passionate relationship with a product. But as Jean Kilbourne points out in this fascinating and shocking exposé, the dreamlike promise of advertising always leaves us hungry for more. We can never be satisfied, because the products we love cannot love us back.Drawing upon her knowledge of psychology, media, and women’s issues, Kilbourne offers nothing less than a new understanding of a ubiquitous phenomenon in our culture. The average American is exposed to over 3,000 advertisements a day and watches three years’ worth of television ads over the course of a lifetime. Kilbourne paints a gripping portrait of how this barrage of advertising drastically affects young people, especially girls, by offering false promises of rebellion, connection, and control. She also offers a surprising analysis of the way advertising creates and then feeds an addictive mentality that often continues throughout adulthood. For more information, including to read an excerpt, click here.

So Sexy So Soon

Popular culture and technology inundate our children with an onslaught of mixed messages at earlier ages than ever before. Corporations capitalize on this disturbing trend, and without the emotional sophistication to understand what they are doing and seeing, kids are getting into increasing trouble emotionally and socially; some may even engage in precocious sexual behavior. Parents are left shaking their heads, wondering: How did this happen? What can we do? So Sexy So Soon is an invaluable and practical guide for parents who are fed up, confused, and even scared by what their kids–or their kids’ friends–do and say. Filled with savvy suggestions, helpful sample dialogues, and poignant true stories from families dealing with these issues, So Sexy So Soon provides parents with the information, skills, and confidence they need to discuss sensitive topics openly and effectively so their kids can just be kids. For more information, including to read an excerpt, visit the So Sexy So Soon book website.

Selected Writings

“The Ephemeral Passport” in Privilege Through the Looking Glass (2nd edition)

Leavy, Patricia, ed. Rotterdam, the Netherlands: Sense Publishers, 2022.

Dogpatch Dispatch: My Encounter with Al Capp

(2020). Hogan’s Alley Magazine

Unmasking Donald Trump

(2020). Ms. Magazine

Feminist Perspectives on Advertising.

Golombisky, Kim, ed. New York: Lexington Books, 2019. Foreword by Jean Kilbourne

Women Pioneers In Public Recovery Disclosure

(2016). Selected papers of William L. White.

So Sexy So Soon

(2009, summer). Wellesley Centers for Women.

Media Education and Public Health

(1998). Telemedium, The Journal of Media Literacy. Vol. 44 No. 2.