Has consumer culture got out of hand? Are the costs of universal access and pollution too great to bear?This comprehensive, lively and informative book will quickly be recognized as a benchmark in the field. It brings together a huge set of resources for thinking about consumer culture and examining its origins and consequences within a global context. Adept in handling a complex range of theories, Consumer Society scrupulously uses examples throughout to inform and enhance understanding. Smart writes with verve and feeling and has produced a book that simultaneously covers and enlarges our understanding of consumer culture. Clear, engaging and original, this book will be important reading for all those interested in our global culture of consumption including students of sociology, social geography and cultural studies.

Designing Obsolescence, Promoting Consumer Demand

Designing obsolescence, promoting consumer demand

The logic of growth within a capitalist market economy necessitates continual pursuit of increases in productivity and perpetual innovations in design and manufacture of an endless stream of products, an essential corollary of which is the need to ensure consumer demand for the proliferating variety of ‘new’ goods is continually generated by utilizing a variety of techniques and strategies to cultivate appropriate levels of interest and desire. As one critical analyst of the promotion of consumer culture has noted:

In response to the exigencies of the productive system of the twentieth century, excessiveness replaced thrift as a social value. It became imperative to invest the laborer with a financial power and a psychic desire to consume. (Ewen, ...

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