Thorstein Veblen's Theories Of Conspicuous Consumption

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What we consume, how we consume it and why do we consume what we consume, are all questions that have been raised within Sociology 306 at Queen’s University by professor Martin Hand. I will aim to provide to this dialogue by explaining and defining Thorstein Veblen’s theories of conspicuous consumption and emulation as well as discussing their relevance to the questions addressed by professor Hand. In addition, providing a report of my recent monitored consumption habits and how the two theories listed above help to understand them. Accordingly, I will conclude this response with a brief discussion as to whether or not these theories are relatable to my consumption habits. Conspicuous consumption is a term coined by Thorstein Veblen in The Theory of the Leisure Class in the early 20th century (Dunn 2008: 36). Categorized as a…show more content…
When I purchased them, I was aware that I was overpaying, I saw other cheaper options that had great reviews. However, regardless of that, I still decided to purchase the more expensive option. This constitutes as conspicuous consumption, as I knowingly decided to waste money. I did this to portray to others that I can afford them and with that represent a wealthy social status. I obtain a gain from the more expensive option even though there are no technical or aesthetic differences. This is a part of another theory, regarding Veblen’s emulation theory. Since Beats are associated to be a product of the upper echelon, due to celebrities being affiliated with the company and wearing them, I wear them to follow in their footsteps. As iconic individuals like Barack and Michelle Obama or LeBron James, and Tom Brady are seen in both advertisements, and daily life wearing them. Thus, I purchased them knowing all of this, to not only emulate them but the class identity which is affiliated with

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