More than a century ago, long before the advent of Fair Trade, citizens took the defence of socially responsible consumerism. An association, the 'Ligue sociale d'acheteurs', encouraged consumers to bear in mind the conditions under which workers laboured; for example, they advised them against shopping on Sundays to protect the weekly rest day, and to choose a seamstress on a list established by the Ligue. Atypical Catholics, open to other countries, other religions and new gender relations, these militants chose consumerism as a way to treat political and social questions – an idea that originated in Great Britain and the United States – but also in order to find their place in the 3rd Republic.
By recounting the origins, the history and the posterity of the Ligue from the 1880s to the 1930s, this book casts a new light on the history of French society in the first half of the 20th century.
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05 June 2012