Foucault on "the art of distributions": interchangeability of individualised bodies, discipline as "an art of rank", of arranging hierarchical relations between said bodies.

Interchangeability—disposability—of humans in transnational capitalism. Sweatshop workers & the "precession of simulacra" (marketing) in manufacturing no-logo. Gig economy & "microwork". "Personal branding", "thinkfluencers", and the corporatisation of the self.

Interchangeability—indistinguishability—of regions and states in transnational capitalism. Export processing zones and the global race to the bottom. National identity as external differentiator (tourism + foreign direct investment) rather than internal assimilator.

But since the 1990s, and through the years of Peak Davos, the high sermons of globalisation have worn away this idea – insisting that countries were just shop stalls in a planetwide marketplace, not romantic distillations of some irreducible national spirit. They could be treated, and so ought to behave, like corporations. In an era when money, influence and people could flow anywhere, countries that aspired to be a destination for these energies had to sell themselves hard. A nation’s identity, for perhaps the first time, had to pull the rest of the world in, rather than bind the nation against the rest of the world.

How to sell a country: the booming business of nation branding


Klein, Naomi. No Logo. ↩︎ 1