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SOC349 - Readings and Lecture on Ethical Eating, Citizen/Purchaser Consumer, and Mass Consumption Activism.docx

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Michelle Szabo

SOC349 – Reading – March 15, 2013 Eating For Change By: Johnston & Cairns Food shopping has become political since consumers are encouraged to upgrade to fair trade-brews, choose between organic products that contain no GMOs, food utilizes sustainable practices and is concerned with animal rights (i.e. veganism) and animal welfare (cage-free/grass fed), pursue local farmers markets (locally made food), food that was made by unionized labour (can link to farmers struggling in Ontario) etc. and if and when you make these conscious food choices you are “eating for change”. “Mass consumption activism” is characterized by the growth of middle-class, the rise of Fordism (Fordist mass consumption) and the outcome of markets. A new consensus between business, labour and government saw economic salvation in – mass consumption; the duty of the good citizen in relation to consumption was merely to buy more and more, and the general benefits of increased prosperity would work themselves throughout society via the market Citizen Consumer "a responsible consumer who is socially-aware, who thinks ahead and tempers his or her desires by social awareness, a consumer whose actions must be morally defensible and who must occasionally be prepared to sacrifice personal pleasure to communal well-being" (Gabriel & Lang, pp.175-176) Citizen consumer is a movement that sees the consumer as a concerned citizen, where he/she is a citizen first and a consumer second. The citizen consumer prompts consumers to be active and vigilant, & gives opportunities for political assertion to powerless groups (blacks/women) while having state intervention in the economy. Citizen consumer through of the collective good and prompted the government to protect it (Cohen) As Cohen says being a citizen consumer has brought forth a notion of consumer activism (tied with political/ethical consumption) Purchaser Consumer entrusts businesses to provide them with high-quality goods at fair prices, to disengage politically and not press government to extend its reach into the economy and to indulge their desires w
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