The term consumerism denotes an economic and a social order, whose objective is to encourage the purchase of goods and services, in a big amount. Consumerism is area of the media culture, and is also associated with Thorstein Veblen, who criticizes considerable consumption. Veblen keenly observed the center class of the twentieth century, and denotes that there degree of consumption increases towards the end of the twentieth century. Their consumption behavior reflected materialism (Close, 24).
On this note, consumerism through the 21st century has led to the rise of materialism, which is most notable in the technology sector. Materialism in the technological sector is depicted by a rise in the sales of technological gadgets, such as cell phones, personal computers, compact disc players and other gadgets. Companies producing these devices are recognized to make millions of dollars in conditions of profitability, and an example includes Apples, and Samsung electronic companies.
These companies further accelerate the idea of materiality by increasing the quality of their products, to carter for completion that emanates from the companies technological companies. There can be an upsurge in companies producing these gadgets, due to a higher demand. This is only precipitated by the idea of materialism (Hoyer, 41). Within the American consumer culture, there is a shift from the moral values of spirituality, communalism, and integrity while consuming the products of any company, or a business. People now focus on competition and disconnection. On this note, our consumer behaviors depict us as materialistic individuals.
In relation to competition, a person can look at what someone else has, and strife to choose the same gadget, or a different gadget. People contend with one another, not because they need the product, but to show their competitors they can spend the money for same gadget. That is also an aspect of materialism, and it does not support the moral values on consumption. In the 21st century, business organizations initiate policies that will make their products attractive to famous personalities, because they greatly influence the reception of these products at the market. For example, business organization can pay huge amount of money to sports leading sports personalities, and famous musicians, for purposes of marketing their products.
Players like JORDAN, Tiger Woods and David Beckham have made huge amount of money, just endorsing the merchandise of varied companies. Due to their endorsements, the merchandise of these companies, have managed to penetrate their target markets. On this note, consumers purchase these products, for purposes of having a feeling of instant gratification. That is called an aspect of emulation. People strive to emulate those of an increased status than them. The poor make an effort to live like the rich, and the rich strive to live and behave like the famous.
The consumption behavior of man through the 21st century has shaped him into an individualistic person. Individualism sometimes appears on the organization sector, at exactly the same time it is depicted on a person himself. For example, producing and consuming commodities result to the extraction, and use of the natural resources. Factories create products from natural resources, and through the process of production, they exert toxic wastes. While using commodities produced, especially the technological commodities, they emit carbon, which is accountable for eroding the environment. These companies do not want to improve their policies plus they continue with the productions, with reduced or no measures to lessen the emissions of carbon (Kanner, 51).
They do not care on the consequences of these productions to the environment. On the side of consumers, they have to boycott the products of companies that do not put in place environmental policies that will ensure the protection of the environment. One argument is that consumers need the products; this argument is not convincing because there are many companies which may be producing the product, and at the same safeguarding the environment. The only reason that hails from the consumers in regard to this is individualism. The consumers only look after themselves, rather than the near future generations who will benefit from the various environmental measures that consumers can help initiate.
Consumerism creates the tendencies of narcissism (Steckstor, 27). Narcissism identifies a tendency whereby a person feels they're better than the other person. A Narcissist will not care for other people, aside from himself, and he or she usually seeks attention. The rise of consumerism in the 21st century has accelerated this idea of Narcissism. This is due to production of various luxuries, and unnecessary materialistic goods which trade at the markets. These products act as a social mechanism, which place people into classes.
For instance, the sort of a person might judge the social class of someone else through the type of car the individual drives. For example, a person driving a Mercedes Benz might look down after a person with a Toyota cab. Upon this note, some people develop relationship with products, with the fact that they are an alternative for a good human relationship. This creates an idea of cultural hegemony, whereby a person believes that, because she or he has a certain product, he or she is much better than those who don't have such kind of products. The 21st century notion of consumerism has made women and men to own a dominant nature in the society. According to analyze, mankind is eating more than 30% of what the surroundings of their surroundings produces (Solomon, 37).
According to this research, countries which consume more than what they can produce, look for ways and means of filling in the deficit, by depleting the sources of other states (Solomon, 23). Thats why States like China, engage other countries in the world, for purposes of looking for energy to meet their needs. United States of America also imports most its oil from Saudi Arabia, and Nigeria. It is because it generally does not have sufficient energy to carter for the consumption needs of its citizens.
Our Human goals have changed extensively dues to our consumer habits. For instance, in seeking a service, humans will be motivated for what they will enter turn, instead of how they'll use the service to benefit the society. An example, is in the training sector. A person will seek education, for self-gain, instead of seeking to serve the society. A person will acquire a job, basing on the expected salary, and not to serve the organization that employees him. This shift inside our mentality has changed the goals of mankind in relation to consumption. The 21st century mankind is impressed by ground breaking ideas, and products. Man does not merely buy a product, because it is on the market, he buys a product predicated on its technological capacity and ability to gratify their needs (Kukathas, 18).
This is because of the option of money, permitted through the various opportunities that promote themselves at the global economy. For example, in the 1960s, companies didn't care for people with little money to spend. This is because they believed these people did not have the ability to influence the marketplace performance with their products. At the current century, business organizations are forced to get the customers opinions, ideas and thought concerning their products (Chin, 16).
This is because the customer will only buy something that satisfies his requirements and needs. The 21st century consumer comes with an ability to bring the downfall of a company, and this is due to power of the internet and the social media. Upon this note, the human goal has changed from buying outdated products, to new and ground breaking products (Steksor, 31). That is proved by the continuous innovations and improvements of Apples product, which can be well received on the market, and has surpassed Nokia, and Samsung in the smartphones market. The performance of Apples in the market is largely related to its innovative tendencies, which is exactly what consumers look for in something.
The goal of mankind has changed to accumulating money, for buying luxurious products. That is instead of accumulate money for purposes of enhancing the society. Consumerism has made mankind to depend on factories and government institutions to carter for his or her basic needs, in exchange for money. Women and men, leave other people, such as business entities to carter for the production of these services. Man is very much centered on money, so that he may access as many possessions as is feasible (Chevalier et al, 21). On this note, he's unable to carter for his basic needs, such as growing food for domestic consumption. For this reason change of human goals, mankind takes other jobs, to supplement his earning, which she or he will use to buy unnecessary luxuries. On this note, men and women waste their times, on jobs that do not challenge their mental capability, simply for purposes of buying luxuries.
In conclusion, consumerism is an international phenomenon. Purchasing and consumption of goods and services in excess to an individuals capability existed through the eras of the first civilization. This depicts the periods of ancient Rome, Babylon and Egypt. Industrial revolution accelerated the concepts of consumerism. During this time period, States in Europe, such as Britain, Belgium, Germany and France sought colonies in order that they could provide recycleables for their industries.
These colonies were in Africa, and Asia. These countries focused on building their industrial infrastructure through mining, oil production, building of transport and communication networks, and creating effective financial regimes. During this time period, these States could actually create enough foods for people, and staff were exploited by working many hours a day, giving them very little time to activate in consumer activities. In United states, the idea emerged during the 1920s, with the rise of cheaper goods.
This notion is similar to that of Europe and in particular, Britain. In Britain, the rise of cheaper, and excessive good due to industrial revelation lead to the emergence of the consumerism culture. Before the periods of 1920s, Americans struggled to feed themselves, because of the scarcity of money, and limited productions (Gunter, 31). But in 1920s, there is the introduction of an assembly line that made it easy for production of goods in plenty, and so led to cheaper production. Factory owners also advertised their products, and the results of the were an awareness of the products in question and their availability. The driving element in this period was the price effectiveness of the products in question. That is also the guiding element in the consumer tendencies of the 21st century. Individuals are guided by the option of money to invest, and the merchandise to buy.