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SOSC reification and consumerism.pdf

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York University
Social Science
SOSC 1040

SOSC 1040 Jan 10, 2013 Reification and Consumerism as forms of Social Control  Reification is a type of the deformation of self. o Both psychological and sociological o Arises out of insecurity and fears o When people pursue happiness, social acceptance and self- preservation, these pursuits can get tangled up with bhvrs that perpetuate self-delusion and manipulation by various cultural forces. o Look at the social stressors that create unhappiness and loss of self; not something wrong with YOU, but society. o Highest form of alienation.  Ppl try to fit in, in pursuit of buying things and etc, and end up being someone you’re not; in order for this to happen must be convinced that “you’re not as good as you are”; thus must do and buy things to better yourself. o A process of “objectification”; ppl get transformed into objects of social processes  {Nations need patriotic subjects who do not question to maintain the nation – consumerism needs active consumers in order to generate corporate profit – in both cases there can be a loss of self. o Consumerism creates a certain kind of stress; stress is a natural response  About buying things to make yourself better in relation to the other; competitively; buy things they don't need but have been convinced that they need  What are the consequences of individuals who are subjectively immersed in consumerism?  The concept of reification refers to how people get influenced into thinking and behaving in ways which do not represent their own best interests, but have been convinced that they do. 1 SOSC 1040 Jan 10, 2013  Reification is a type of self-deception that can result in self defeat – competing with oneself, thinking oneself as lesser or inferior can entail the destruction of the self.  Reification begins with the manipulation/tampering of one’s ability to think critically by and for themselves and thus resist being socially controlled.  Reification is a condition that the individual is not consciously aware of – it often masks its own workings in the form of pleasure, belonging, self assertion etc.  Reification is based on a form of contradictory logic – for example: “self preservation comes through sacrifice”, that to be a ‘winner’ you must defeat the other, to think and behave according to what the consumer society
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