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23 Jan 12 - Consumerism.docx

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Sociology 2172A/B
Jennifer Silcox

ConsumerismWeeks 34 What is consumerismConsumerism is the preoccupation with the acquisition of goods to satisfy needs through material thingsHave we developed unsustainable consumption patternsHow have we reached this point o Right now we are exposed to 3500 ads per day including subtle ads Shirts smaller things you might not notice etc Just the ads we walk past in our daily lives o TV and films have taught us to associate happiness with material products What can we buy to make us happy cars watches rap music videos showing material items o We can replace social contact with people with material items Some people claim they get spiritual fulfilment through buying things Cycle of ConsumerismSome have said the process of consumption is a psychological syndromeStages o AdvertisementMakes you feel pressured to go buy something Ex Christmas o PurchasePurchasing an object in hopes of making them feel better o IndebtednessLess money adjust budget may need to take on a new job o AlienationConsumer has realized the product has not brought them the happiness it promised Process starts over again to make the consumer feel happy again The Role of AdvertisingWe are becoming a culture obsessed with consumerismFew people remember the ads they see so how does this system workThe purpose of advertising is to manipulate people to buy goods and services with little thought Even if an ad fails to sell someone a product it is still selling consumerism Saying it is something potentially you should do even though you wont buy itAdvertising works to restrain or distaste Sells us one thing even though in reality it is giving something completely oppositeDo ads like these Car ads cause people to dismiss environmental concerns o Car is one with the nature doesnt take into account different pollutions Sound CO2 etc o Also say you can get the car for a certain price but in reality it doesnt take into consideration people can afford them LowerClass MarketingMarketing experts have shown that social standing is linked with certain products
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