• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The First Edition of this contemporary classic can claim to have put ‘consumer culture’ on the map, certainly in relation to postmodernism. Updated throughout, this expanded new edition includes a fully revised preface that explores the developments in consumer culture since the First Edition. Among the most noteworthy areas discussed are the effect of global warming on consumption, the rise of the new rich, changes in the North/South divide and the new diversity of consumer culture. The result is a book that shakes the boundaries of debate, from one of the foremost writers on culture and postmodernism of the present day.

Modern and Postmodern: Definitions and Interpretations
Modern and postmodern: Definitions and interpretations

Any reference to the term ‘postmodernism’ immediately exposes one to the risk of being accused of jumping on a bandwagon, of perpetuating a rather shallow and meaningless intellectual fad. One of the problems is that the term is at once fashionable yet irritatingly elusive to define. As the ‘Modern-day Dictionary of Received Ideas’ confirms, ‘This word has no meaning. Use it as often as possible’ (Independent, 24 December 1987). Over a decade earlier, in August 1975, another newspaper announced that ‘postmodernism is dead’, and that ‘post-post-modernism is now the thing’ (Palmer, 1977: 364). If postmodernism is an ephemeral fashion then some critics are clear as to who are responsible for its prominence:

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