Ruben Pater,

Ruben Pater (1977, NL) (he/him) works between journalism and graphic design. Under the name Untold Stories, Pater creates visual narratives that support solidarity, justice, and equality. Pater finds himself being a designer at a time when design is last thing the world needs. Until more ethical approaches present themselves, he designs, writes, and teaches. He is a tutor at the BA Graphic Design, and the MA Non Linear Narrative at KABK. The Politics of Design, is his first book about cultural bias in graphic design. His second book CAPS LOCK looks at the role of graphic design in capitalism.


Capitalism could not exist without the coins, notes, documents, graphics, interfaces, branding and advertisements; artefacts that have been (partly) created by graphic designers. Even anti-consumerist strategies such as social design and speculative design are being appropriated within capitalist societies to serve economic growth. It seems that design is locked in a system of exploitation and profit, a cycle that fosters inequality and the depletion of natural resources.

CAPS LOCK uses clear language and striking visual examples to show how graphic design and capitalism are inextricably linked. The book contains many case studies of designed objects related to capitalist societies and cultures, and also examines how the education and professional practice of (graphic) designers supports the market economy and how design practice is caught within that very system.

CAPS LOCK is an inspirational book full of sources for design students, educators and visual communicators all over the world, just like Ruben’s first book The Politics of Design.

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