My mini-review of Marina Hyde's Celebrity: How Entertainers Took Over the World and Why We Need an Exit Strategy over on The Book Depository:
It is hardly original suggesting that celebrity -- and our obsession with it -- is absurd, but Marina Hyde's excellent book also fully debunks the idea that it is harmless. Hanging our collective hopes on the do-gooding activities of entertainers is not only childish and ridiculous it is, Hyde argues, dangerous.
For sure, celebrity-worship has been around for a long time, but in our media-saturated age the easiest copy to write and publish normally involves Someone Famous doing Something (anything!). Look at any tabloid "news"paper -- news is now simply what A. N. Actor has recently got up to, however dull or tawdry. Tragically, what now passes for more substantive copy is when Someone Famous does Something for Charity. But obscenely overpaid mannequins lecturing us to cough-up our hard-earned on their personal hobby-horse is no way to solve the world's problems.
Is there anything more senseless then Sharon Stone attending the World Economic Forum or Jude Law lecturing us about the Taliban? Hyde doesn't think so. Ginger Spice may well be a goodwill ambassador, but all that shows is that even the UN has bought into our collective inanity and fawning in the face of fame.
So, what is the solution? Hyde doesn't really offer one, but the first step might be simply to laugh at the pomposity of the performing monkeys we've insanely begun to worship. Hyde's book is as good a place as any to start our much-needed celebrity detox!