Quiz #2 Shopping and Fiske – Brianna Hill

Posted: October 27, 2013 in Uncategorized
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After going shopping this week, my experiences relate to Fiske’s text on shopping in particular to how “the location of shops within the overall structure and in their design, both of which are spatial metaphors for social relations” (325). Fiske separates the shops into 3 categories that window or potential shoppers can view and choose which inviting store will fit their class taste and social identity. I have attached three pictures for you to guess based on the criteria to follow, which shop is for which class: lower, middle and upper. Try to analyze this based solely on storefront design and not if you are familiar with the name brand and products.

 1. The first on the lowest level is for the “lower class” or “democratic shops”. These are indifferent, low priced goods that appeal to everyone. They don’t really have windows but simply open fronts that signal open to the public, anyone can come in and shop here.

 2. The “middle class” level stores are not yet exclusive but have a little more boundaries than the democratic shops. Their objects are medium priced with the windows pushing their objects for different individuals to see, with tons more objects on the inside. The lighting on the manikins is bright, showing that you will fit into this group if you consume these products. The design is strategically in place to differentiate itself from other identities and groups.

 3. The “upper class” is usually on the highest level of a store (think expensive high floors in NYC stores). The upper class stores are so individualistic to the point of exclusivity (325) that they filter out lower consumers and mass viewers that do not fit the identity and lifestyle the store portrays. The windows have fewer of their products and some times none on display because they are not available for everyone to look and consume. The lighting is low and the shop is less seen and sometimes invisible. 

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Photo 1: Middle Class. Photo 2: Upper Class. Photo 3: Lower Class/Democratic Shop.

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