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Constructing Corporate AmericaHistory, Politics, Culture$
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Kenneth Lipartito and David B. Sicilia

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251902

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251902.001.0001

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The Corporation Under Siege: Social Movements, Regulation, Public Relations, and Tort Law since the Second World War

The Corporation Under Siege: Social Movements, Regulation, Public Relations, and Tort Law since the Second World War

Chapter:
(p.188) CHAPTER 7 The Corporation Under Siege: Social Movements, Regulation, Public Relations, and Tort Law since the Second World War
Source:
Constructing Corporate America
Author(s):

David B. Sicilia (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251902.003.0008

This chapter examines the experiences of three US industries — chemical manufacturing, tobacco, and nuclear power — that came under political, legal, and rhetorical attack following World War II, and identifies cross-cutting patterns in the public and private interests who besieged the industries, and in how they responded. At varying times and with few notable exceptions, the conflicts progressed through five stages: industry success and optimism following the war; sustained challenges by social movements; increasing regulatory control by a ‘new social’ regulatory regime in the early 1970s; new, specialized accommodationist public relations strategies and tactics; and involvement in large-scale tort regulation. Unlike most studies of alleged and real corporate malfeasance, this chapter considers both corporate and anti-corporate interests and actions, and suggests a framework for understanding post-World-War-II political economy more broadly.

Keywords:   business history, corporation, social movements, new social regulation, public relations, tort law, chemicals, chemical industry, tobacco industry, nuclear power

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