Posts Tagged ‘Consumption’

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The introductory reading, from Holt and Schor, about commodification got me thinking about the Japanese love industry. It is fascinating – yet scary – how Japan has commodified almost every aspect of a ‘being in a relationship’ into a culture of consumption and materialism. It has come to the point where Japan has the fastest negative population growth in the world! With services of recreational love and affection with no strings attached, like the Host or the Cuddle Cafe, it almost makes you wonder what is next…

This week’s readings on Conspicuous Consumption and Shopping for Pleasure made me think of the story and recently released film The Great Gatsby. I should note this is a spoiler alert: the main character Gatsby shows off his extravagant lifestyle by throwing wild parties (that he doesn’t even attend!) with sole intentions of impressing his main love interest, Daisy. As Fiske describes, Gatsby doesn’t actually enjoy the physical consumption of these lavish goods but blatantly “wastes” all this in the hopes that this spectacle of wealth will lure Daisy in. This shows how Gatsby conspicuously consumes by overtly displaying his wealth to signal higher social status to Daisy because who doesn’t praise materialism these days? This constant struggle and competition to “be the best” and consume the most has led to the emergence of the consumer society.

Brianna Hill