Exploring the expression of taste through the processes of consumption this book provides an incisive and accessible evaluation of the current theories of consumption, and trends in the representation and purchase of food. Alan Warde outlines various theories of change in the twentieth century, and considers the parallels between their diagnoses of consumer behaviour and actual trends in food practices. He argues that dilemmas of modern practical life and certain imperatives of the culture of consumption make sense of food selection. He suggests that contemporary consumption is best viewed as a process of continual selection among an unprecedented range of generally accessible items which are made available both commerciall
Chapter 1: Consumption, Taste and Social Change
Consumption, Taste and Social Change
Sociology and Consumption
After decades of comparative neglect, there has been an explosion of interest in the topic of consumption. Some sociologists have made strong claims for the new structural role of consumption practice as a central focus of everyday life, a focus in earlier times provided by occupation. In such a view, lifestyle increasingly becomes a basis of social identity, displacing class as the central organizing principle of social life:
The crucial effect of ‘affluence’ in post-war capitalism has surely been to justify the ideology and allow the practice of individualism and to link the acquisition and use of consumer goods to values which emphasize the importance of the search for personal identity and authenticity. (Moorhouse, 1983: ...