30 Aug '13, 2am

great article about how consumerism had its way, and may now be on its way -- away:

great article about how consumerism had its way, and may now be on its way -- away:

Way back in 1899, when consumerism was barely a glimmer in advertisers’ neurons, economist Thorstein Veblen asserted in his widely cited book The Theory of the Leisure Class that there exists a fundamental split in society between those who work and those who exploit the work of others; as societies evolve, the latter come to constitute a “leisure class” that engages in “conspicuous consumption.” Veblen saw mass production as a way to universalize the trappings of leisure so the owning class could engage workers in an endless pursuit of status symbols, thus deflecting their attention from society’s increasingly unequal distribution of wealth and from their own political impotence. Later critics of consumerism included German historian Oswald Spengler, who wrote that “Life in America is exclusively economic in structure and lacks depth”; Mohandas Gandhi, who regarded a simp...

Full article: http://www.postcarbon.org/blog-post/1786882-the-brief-tra...

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