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PRINT October 1970

The Cuban Poster

IN CAPITALIST SOCIETY, POSTERS are a ubiquitous part of the décor of the urban landscape. Connoisseurs of new forms of beauty may find visual gratification in the unplanned collage of posters (and neon signs) that decorate the cities. It is an additive effect, of course, since few posters to be seen outdoors nowadays, regarded one by one, give any esthetic pleasure. More specialized connoisseurs—of the esthetics of infestation, of the libertine aura of litter, and of the libertarian implications of randomness—can find pleasure in this decor. But what keeps posters multiplying in the urban areas of the capitalist world is their commercial utility in selling particular products and, beyond that, in perpetuating a social climate in which it is normative to buy. Since the economy’s health depends on steadily encroaching upon whatever limits people’s habits of consumption, there can be no limit

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