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Torches of Freedom


Smoking is a feminist act. Well, it is according to Edward Bernays – a master of the dark art of persuasion in advertising and marketing. One of his most notorious stunts was re-branding cigarettes as ‘Torches of Freedom’ to appeal to women and encourage them to smoke more. Light up against the patriarchy, sisters!

Click here to read more about ‘Torches of Freedom’ on Wikipedia

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About Author Profile: Worm

In between dealing with all things technological in the Dabbler engine room, Worm writes the weekly Wikiworm column every Saturday and our monthly Book Club newsletters.

3 thoughts on “Torches of Freedom

  1. seamussweeney1@gmail.com'
    November 21, 2015 at 23:05

    It’s worth reading James Walton’s Faber Book of Smoking – http://www.theguardian.com/books/2000/nov/11/booksonhealth.historybooks – which is out of print. It is full of good stuff, particularly on the now entirely disappeared genre – “the perfectly respectable book about smoking which praises it to the skies” (Compton Mackenzie’s Sublime Tobacco seems to have been the last of this line)

    You are realise that one reason there was resistance to the notion that smoking caused lung cancer was that there had been a long history of entertainingly daft blasts against tobacco that seemed, from the perspective of the 1950s, to belong with fulminations against masturbation and such.

    • seamussweeney1@gmail.com'
      November 21, 2015 at 23:05

      Actually, it might even merit a 1p book review.

      • wormstir@gmail.com'
        November 22, 2015 at 08:54

        yes please Seamus!

        There’s a great likelihood that my resistance to the whole Climate Change thing might have parallels with the 1950’s smokers you mention

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