Anti-Consumerism In Chuck Palahniuk's Fight Club

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Society’s corporate and cultural influences can be extremely oppressive and tolling forces in people’s daily lives. In Chuck Palahniuk’s Fight Club, characters do all they can to liberate themselves from and rebel against these capitalistic forces. Specifically, the narrator attempts to break free from the binding chains of consumerism and the workforce, and in doing so, he acts as Palahniuk’s vehicle to convey themes of anti- consumerism and nonconformity. Throughout the narrator’s journey, he displays traits of mental illness, apathy, and a lack of true independence. He also markedly struggles with his individuality; instead of being the master of his own fate, he is easily influenced by others, especially Tyler Durden. The narrator’s…show more content…
Specifically, anti- consumerism is illustrated when the narrator states, “You buy furniture. You tell yourself, this is the last sofa I will ever need in my life. Buy the sofa, then for a couple years you’re satisfied . . . Then you're trapped in your lovely nest, and the things you used to own, now they own you" (Palahniuk 44). In these lines, the narrator is acknowledging his obsession with buying and filling his apartment with consumer product after consumer product. The phrases “trapped in your lovely nest” and “the things you used to own, now they own you” emphasize consumerism as a self perpetuated, false safe haven, and portray the narrator as a slave to society’s values. In other words, the narrator is trapped within his obsession. With his sarcastic tone, the narrator appears to abhor his entrapment within societal conventions, recognizing that it is detrimental to his life and preventing him from truly living, but still, he is unable to do anything. However, when the narrator’s apartment full of possessions is blown up, he is liberated in a sense. In his liberation, a certain level of anti consumerism is
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