I’ve appreciated this passage from bell hooks’ Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center since I first read it, and its importance only seems to ripen:
One form of power women exercise in the economic sphere is that of consumption. Boycotts have not been used often as a strategy, successful in educational if not economic terms. If women all around the United States turned off their television sets for an extended period of time and purchased no products other than the very basic necessities to protest exploitation of women (e.g. increasing representation of violence against women on tv), these actions would have significant political and economic consequences. Since women are not thoroughly organized and are daily manipulated by ruling male groups who profit from sexism and female consumerism, we have never exercised this power. Most women do not understand the forms of power they could exercise. They need political education for critical consciousness to show them ways to exercise the limited powers they possess.