Consumer Culture: History, Theory and Politics

Consumer Culture: History, Theory and Politics

by Roberta Sassatelli
     
 

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ISBN-10: 141291180X

ISBN-13: 9781412911801

Pub. Date: 05/17/2007

Publisher: SAGE Publications

Showing the cultural and institutional processes that have brought the notion of the 'consumer' to life, this book guides the reader on a comprehensive journey through the history of how we have come to understand ourselves as consumers in a consumer society and reveals the profound ambiguities and ambivalences inherent within. Rooted in sociology, Roberta

Overview

Showing the cultural and institutional processes that have brought the notion of the 'consumer' to life, this book guides the reader on a comprehensive journey through the history of how we have come to understand ourselves as consumers in a consumer society and reveals the profound ambiguities and ambivalences inherent within. Rooted in sociology, Roberta Sassatelli also draws on history, anthropology, geography, and economics to give an exemplary introduction to the history and theory of consumer culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781412911801
Publisher:
SAGE Publications
Publication date:
05/17/2007
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
6.69(w) x 9.53(h) x (d)

Table of Contents


Acknowledgements     vii
Introduction: Born to consume     1
Structure of the book     6
The Rise of Consumer Culture     9
Capitalism and the Consumer Revolution     13
Consumption, production and exchange     13
The genesis of consumer capitalism     20
From courts to cities, from luxuries to fashion     25
Summary     30
The Cultural Production of Economic Value     32
Commodity flows, knowledge flows     32
The invention of the consumer and the cultural trajectories of goods     35
Consumer society as historical type     41
Summary     50
Theories of Consumer Agency     53
Utility and Social Competition     57
The sovereign consumer     57
The limits of economic rationality     60
Fashion, style and conspicuous consumption     64
Beyond emulation     69
Summary     72
Needs, Manipulation and Simulation     74
From commodity fetishism to critical theory     74
Nature, authenticity and resistance     78
Postmodern pessimism     82
Social relations and consumption     84
Summary     88
Taste, Identity and Practices     91
Taste and distinction     92
Cultural classification and identity     98
Appropriating commodities     101
Ambivalence and practice     106
Summary     109
The Politics of Consumption     113
Representations and Consumerism     117
The anti-consumerist rhetoric and the apology of consumption     118
Advertising cultures and their languages     125
Ideology, social differences and consumerism     131
Summary     136
Commodities and Consumers     139
Commoditization and de-commoditization     140
Goods, values and the boundaries of commoditization     147
The normalization of consumption     154
Summary     160
Contexts of Consumption     163
Leisure, commercial institutions and public places     164
The home, the commercialization of feelings and cultural consumption     170
Localized consumption in McDonaldized settings     174
Alternative consumption and social movements     182
Summary     190
Epilogue: Consumers, Consumer Culture(s) and the Practices of Consumption      193
Further Reading and Resources     199
References     204
Index     230

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