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Like "geese force-fed grain until their livers explode, to make foie gras, we are a generation born to consume," says this witty commentary on rampant consumerism enabled by design innovation. Indeed, Sudjic (director of London's Design Museum and author of The Edifice Complex) says, consumer snobbery and design obsession can border on "high-functioning autism." Writing almost conversationally, he explores how "consumer engineering" expanded the design process, inspiring the world to "consume [its] way out of the Great Depression"and becoming the present marketing ideal. Luxury, fashion and art, says Sudjic,are the highlights of modern design, with fashion as the "most developed form of built-in obsolescence"-and consumers are willing to pay dearly for the impermanence. Brimming throughout with primarily British examples, pricing and language, Sudjic's appreciation of first-rate design shows through his vivid descriptions of universally classic functional or aesthetically pleasing archetypes. Especially appealing to marketers and design connoisseurs, this is easily digestible for the average consumers interested in knowingly purchasing quality design for the senses-if they can still afford it in today's economy. 71 b&w illus, 5 color illus. (June)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.