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Project - Research Paper Example

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CONSUMERISM CULTURE, ITS EFFECTS AND SOLUTIONS Name: Tutor: Course: Date Outline A. Introduction i. Definition of Consumerism ii. History of Consumerism iii. Consumerism in Modern Societies B. Problems of Consumerism i. Pollution ii. Resource Depletion iii…
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Download file to see previous pages... According to Miles (2008), it involves active acquisition of material items and purchase of services for convenient purposes. This aspect is economic in nature because in entails exercising one’s economic power in purchasing goods and services. On the other hand, consumerism possesses sociological attributes because it serves as a measure of elite lifestyle and social status. Poor members of the society purchase only the basic needs. However, consumerism involves mass acquisition and consumption in excess of one’s basic needs. According to Stearns (2006), consumerism derives its origin from industrial revolution in the Western world. Prior to industrial revolution, resources and goods were scarce, and acquisition of these items was invariably restricted by the scarcity. However, industrial revolution led to massive production of material items and services. As a result of surplus in production, Western societies adopted an economic behavior characterized by massive purchase and consumption of goods as a show of social and economic strength. Consequently, proliferation of industrialization spread consumerism behaviors to other parts of the world including the Middle East and Asia. In modern commercial settings, consumerism is commonly referred to as consumer culture or market culture. As opposed to its earlier principles of mass consumption, current consumerism entails a close association between brand items and owners. According to Campbell (2005), American markets indicate a tendency for people to elicit strong attraction towards items as symbol of economic and social status. Purchase of brand and expensive automobiles and jewelry satisfies consumerism aspects members within America society. Apart from the US markets, other commercial environments across the world use goods and services as a measure of socioeconomic status of individuals. According to Campbell (2005), this has led to a situation whereby social stratification based on economic strength has induced irresponsible production and consumption of goods and services. Consequently, irresponsible production presents adverse effects on environment and resource base. Problems of Consumerism Since inception of consumerism as a socioeconomic culture, there have been numerous criticisms on this aspect. Stearns (2006) says that as earlier as during the 20th Century, religious leaders in Europe including Pope Benedict 5 were opposed to the manner in which people were using economic power as a measure of social status. Currently, consumerism has been associated with a myriad of problems which include environmental pollution, depletion of resources, increase in social inequality, disruption of economy and increase in social deviance. With respect to social deviance, people are trying to acquire wealth and resources in an effort to increase their economic ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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