Paper $27.50 ISBN: 9780226590646 Published December 2018
Cloth $82.50 ISBN: 9780226590509 Published December 2018
E-book $10.00 to $27.50 About E-books ISBN: 9780226590783 Published December 2018 Also Available From
E-book Retailers: B&N Nook Google Play Kobo Library Vendors: EBSCO

Guerrilla Marketing

Counterinsurgency and Capitalism in Colombia

Alexander L. Fattal

Guerrilla Marketing
See the professor’s guide for the book.

Alexander L. Fattal

304 pages | 33 halftones | 6 x 9 | © 2018
Paper $27.50 ISBN: 9780226590646 Published December 2018
Cloth $82.50 ISBN: 9780226590509 Published December 2018
E-book $10.00 to $27.50 About E-books ISBN: 9780226590783 Published December 2018
Brand warfare is real. Guerrilla Marketing details the Colombian government’s efforts to transform Marxist guerrilla fighters in the FARC into consumer citizens. Alexander L. Fattal shows how the market has become one of the principal grounds on which counterinsurgency warfare is waged and postconflict futures are imagined in Colombia. This layered case study illuminates a larger phenomenon: the convergence of marketing and militarism in the twenty-first century. Taking a global view of information warfare, Guerrilla Marketing combines archival research and extensive fieldwork not just with the Colombian Ministry of Defense and former rebel communities, but also with political exiles in Sweden and peace negotiators in Havana. Throughout, Fattal deftly intertwines insights into the modern surveillance state, peace and conflict studies, and humanitarian interventions, on one hand, with critical engagements with marketing, consumer culture, and late capitalism on the other. The result is a powerful analysis of the intersection of conflict and consumerism in a world where governance is increasingly structured by brand ideology and wars sold as humanitarian interventions.
Full of rich, unforgettable ethnographic stories, Guerrilla Marketing is a stunning and troubling analysis of the mediation of global conflict.
Review Quotes
New Yorker
"A sobering book on how armies burnish their brands. . . a detailed, eye-opening investigation."
Philippe Bourgois
"A remarkable ethnography."
"Guerrilla Marketing is a fascinating book that illustrates how the government’s turn to marketing blurred the boundaries between war and peace by penetrating deep into the emotional space of insurgents and their families. It is a well-written account that intersperses analytic chapters with the author’s riveting interviews with FARC insurgents, which offer a view into how the rebels understand what has happened to themand sidesteps PAHD propaganda. The book should be read by anyone trying to understand contemporary Colombian society."
Jon Lee Anderson, author of Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life
Guerrilla Marketing is a fascinating examination of how commercial-style branding has been deployed by both rebels and the state in Colombia's civil war. Fattal deserves high praise for his extraordinary research, carried out over many years in the edgy and borderless terrain of the war's periphery. His insights are lucid and the stories he tells are haunting. This book is a must-read for scholars of modern conflict, journalists, and diplomats.”
Winifred L. Tate, author of Drugs, Thugs, and Diplomats
Guerrilla Marketing is a poignant and theoretically innovative ethnography imbued with Fattal’s dynamic, compelling voice. This book is a significant contribution to studies of Colombia and the complexities of the human experiences of conflict, insurgency, and demobilization.”
Jean Comaroff, coeditor of The Politics of Custom
“This is a scintillating study: a surprising story of how Colombia deployed the power of advertising to counter armed conflict, and turned to the magic of branding to make counterinsurgency seem like a humanitarian enterprise. Not only does Fattal give a riveting account of how the Colombian state became an unlikely pacesetter in the business of peacemaking; he illuminates the growing salience of consumer marketing to statecraft everywhere in the twenty–first century world.”
Michael Taussig, author of Palma Africana
“Now that the hyped Colombian ‘peace agreement’ lies in tatters, Fattal’s meticulously detailed book is not only timely but theoretically refreshing and politically astute. Combining peasant stories of life in the guerrilla with a top-down view of media manipulation, it opens us up to novel understandings of the use of images and the power of anthropology.”

Colombia Section, Latin American Studies Association: Michael Jimenez Prize

View Recent Awards page for more award winning books.
For more information, or to order this book, please visit
Google preview here

Chicago Manual of Style

Chicago Blog: History

Events in History

Keep Informed