Consumer Society and the Postmodern City by David B Clarke

By David B Clarke

The truth that we inhabit a shopper society has highly far-reaching implications. operating in the course of the frequently arguable principles of the patron society's so much influential theorists, Jean Baudrillard and Zygmunt Bauman, this publication assesses the ways that consumerism is reshaping the character and that means of town. It examines the character of intake and its expanding centrality to post-modern society by;*considering the advance of consumerism as a primary side of social life*demonstrating that social inequalities are more and more based round consumption*uncovering the hidden outcomes of consumerism*pondering the which means of lifestyle*revealing how the character of truth is altering in an age of globalization.Employing a sustained and fascinating theoretical research, the e-book levels throughout quite a few occasionally unforeseen subject matters. It represents an impassioned plea for everybody attracted to the social lifetime of towns to take the suggestion of the patron society - and the arguments of its significant theorists - heavily.

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19 As previously noted, the idea of a social contract between primordial individuals is very much an ideological construct – and one of relatively recent vintage, bearing all the hallmarks of modernity (Althusser 1969; 1972; Dumont 1977; 1986). To sum up, therefore, where Maussian gift exchange implies reciprocity, inalienable objects, and moral subjects, economic exchange involves abstract economic rationalizations and rational economic abstractions (free individuals included). ] needs in the economic system, it is the economic system that induces the individual function and the parallel functionality of objects and needs’.

Where ‘it appears to consume (destroy) products, production only consummates their utility. ). ). To this extent, capitalist consumption mirrors capitalist production. ). Baudrillard stresses the parallel process at work in consumption – which remained hidden, both in Marx’s time and Marx’s analysis, behind the supposedly ‘concrete’ process consumption ‘naturally’ represents (defined in terms of use-value). Hence Baudrillard contrasts consumption as a process geared, despite appearances, to the expanded reproduction of the system of use-values (the capitalist system of objects), which is a necessary corollary of capitalist production, with consummation of a radically different kind.

However, the sense in which this analytical framework Consumption controversies 21 retains the trace of the historical conditions in which it first suggested itself is far more problematic than is usually allowed. Whatever degree of analytical spin is put on the sense of ‘necessary’ consumption, it still carries a distant echo of the distinction between ‘necessary’ and ‘luxury’ consumption, thus maintaining a rigid distinction that capitalism itself long since set about erasing. Luxury consumption – conspicuously unproductive consumption – plays equally as crucial a part in the reproduction of capitalism as does ‘productive consumption’.

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