Consumerism Theory Argumentative Essay

This is FREE sample
This text is free, available online and used for guidance and inspiration. Need a 100% unique paper? Order a custom essay.
  • Any subject
  • Within the deadline
  • Without paying in advance
Get custom essay

This theory is built on the premise of a progressively greater consumption of goods that is economically beneficial and attachment to materialistic values and possessions that is propelled by media influences. Consumerism in the context of this study is the false creation of a particular system aimed at encouraging consumers/citizenry to spend on frivolities and some irrelevant goods and services. This art fosters materialism as people in the society are rated by their material acquisitions.

In a society where consumerism dominates, property becomes the most easily recognised evidence of success as distinguished from heroic or signal achievement. Purposeful effort comes to mean, primarily, effort directed towards the acquisition of more accumulated wealth.

Consumerism is characterized by some irrational decisions by consumers. According to Kabir: To live on the earth, for survival, we must consume foods, essential products or services. Nothing is wrong in it and this is not consumerism. In fact, the working definition of consumerism is the consumption of products or services for fulfilling the artificial demands created in the human psyche. In the myth of consumerism, by consuming products and services the individual perceives that eventually he/she will be gratified and integrated. Unfortunately, consumerism offers only short-term ego-gratification for those who can afford the luxury and frustration for those who cannot.

Consumerism leads to judging and treating people according to their possessions, which give rise to envy and rancour and causes a breakdown in family and community relations. Furthermore, if consumerism leads a person towards debt, crime or depression; this results in much anxiety and inevitably strains one’s social relations with others.

Globalization seeks to make the world a space in which technology distant are overcome. In doing so, it also aim to drive the world to one single economy of ‘free market’ otherwise known as global capitalism. However, the turn of 21st century has seen questions asked about the motif behind the concept of globalization and whether it is not price American-fix aimed at deceit and foolery. Branston and Stafford (quoting Herbert Schillar) raised two key points aimed at throwing light on the true of picture of “globalization”.

According to him:

  • The dominance of US advertising – driven commercial media force a costly US model of broadcasting, print, radio and associated technologies on the rest of the world, including non-commercial cultures. This very specific US commercial culture becomes normalised.
  • This also inculcates desires for US-style consumerism in the societies which can ill afford it, and which some would say have better models of how to live anyway, especially now, with the planet imperilled by over – consumption of its ‘development’ parts (488)

In the same vein, Stanley Baran (quoting Richard Rosenbery) also raised vehemently against the idea of globalization which leaves the power of the media and advertising in the hands of the Americans. The advance nations of the world, through their multi-national corporation, will greatly expand their control over the international flow of information. As a result, much of the world may become even more heavily dependent on Western nations.

It is this dominance by US and their stronghold on the media that gave birth to consumerism in the 20th century.

Consumerism, associated with the criticisms of consumption, was initiated by Thorsten Veblen in the ninetieth century. This criticism was targeted at the consumption pattern of the emerging middle class in the twentieth century. The emergence of consumerism is also closely associated with individualism a theory which emphasis the power of individuals and a fall-out of capitalism.

Consumerism has continued to hold sway well into the 21st century as US tightens its stronghold on the media. With little or no significant policy to checkmate this, the developing countries are made the target of these mass sales of American products, packaged in manners which conceal all their demerits.

Cite this paper

Consumerism Theory Argumentative Essay. (2020, Nov 29). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/consumerism-theory/



Is consumerism a sociological theory?
Consumerism is not a sociological theory in itself, but it is a phenomenon that has been studied and analyzed by sociologists. It refers to the belief that consuming goods and services is a primary driver of economic growth and social progress.
What are the main features of consumerism?
The main features of consumerism are that it encourages people to buy more and more items, and that it often results in people feeling dissatisfied with what they have.
What is a example of consumerism?
Consumerism is an economic theory that suggests that the more goods and services people consume, the more economic growth will take place. A good example of consumerism would be if someone buys a new car, which would then lead to the production of more cars and the creation of more jobs.
What is the definition of consumerism in sociology?
In order to protect the environment and ensure sustainable development, it is important for individuals to consume responsibly. This means consuming products and services in a way that minimizes negative environmental impacts and meets basic needs without compromising the needs of future generations.
We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Peter is on the line!

Don't settle for a cookie-cutter essay. Receive a tailored piece that meets your specific needs and requirements.

Check it out