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The Telegraph notes how advertisers have been turning to classic poets to sell products.

Charlotte Runcie gives this example: “The new ad for the iPad Air features a voiceover from Robin Williams in his Whitman-toting Dead Poets Society incarnation. The Whitman extract in question is from Leaves of Grass:

“O me! O life!… of the questions of these recurring;
“Of the endless trains of the faithless—of cities fill’d with the foolish

“… Answer.
“That you are here—that life exists and identity,
“That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.”

Here’s another: “Levi’s chose an extract from A Midsummer Night’s Dream to reboot their advertising campaign for 501 jeans in 2005.

“The magical fairy forest became downtown LA, with Bottom – played by Joshua Alba – getting grabbed by a member of a nearby gang, who exclaims: ‘Oh Bottom, thou art changed! What do I see on thee?’ At this point in the play, Bottom has grown donkey ears. In the advert, he has bought new jeans.

“Then fairy queen Titania arrives, and says:

“Mine ear is much enamoured of thy note;
“So is mine eye enthralled to thy shape…
More.

All good fun. But I think companies should reach out to contemporary poets the way Ford once reached out to poet Marianne Moore. It would be a good way for poets to earn a little money doing what they love. Then again, companies may prefer the “free” aspect of dead poets.

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Saw these signs on my morning walk and did a little googling around to learn more.

 

Naturally, there’s a website with an explanation:

“Rock the Vote’s mission is to engage and build political power for young people in our country.

“Founded twenty-one years ago at the intersection of popular culture and politics, Rock the Vote has registered more than five million young people to vote and has become a trusted source of information for young people about registering to vote and casting a ballot. We use music, popular culture, new technologies and grassroots organizing to motivate and mobilize young people in our country to participate in every election, with the goal of seizing the power of the youth vote to create political and social change.

“The Millennial Generation is diverse and huge in number, making up nearly 1/4 of the entire electorate in 2012. This is both the challenge and the opportunity. Rock the Vote is dedicated to building the political power of young people by engaging them in the electoral process, urging politicians to pay attention to issues that matter to young voters, and protecting their fundamental right to vote. Our goal is to reinvigorate our country’s democracy and redefine citizenship for a generation in 2012 and beyond.”

Check out Rock the Vote here. There are some videos from celebrities using humor to encourage young people to register.

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