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Tamed Hedonism

  • By: Roberta Sassatelli
  • In: Encyclopedia of Consumer Culture
  • Edited by: Dale Southerton
  • Subject:Sociology of Consumption, Consumer Psychology, Consumer Culture

A number of works on the development of contemporary consumer culture have pointed to the new hedonistic directions taken by puritan morality in societies increasingly characterized by consumerism and promotional culture. Some, such as Chandra Mukerji, see a mixture of hedonism and asceticism as a characteristic of the kind of materialist culture that has fostered commercial modernity in Renaissance cities. Others, like Colin Campbell, consider that Romantic teachings, as developed from the late eighteenth century, have contributed to the birth of the modern consumer defined by modern forms of “mentalistic” hedonism whereby commodities become the prime matter for personal creative fantasy. Many others consider that it is from the dawn of the twentieth century and increasingly after World War II that signals have become stronger, ...

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