Livin the American Dream

The above quote was overheard while browsing around the “Made in Virginia Store” during my trip to downtown Fredericksburg on Friday afternoon. I’ve been hanging out downtown for four years now, but I’ve never seen the town through a more anthropological view as I did on Friday. The date was Friday, September 26th, and the […]

When Professor Moon began this week’s discussion by singing Petula Clark’s “Downtown”, I knew it was going to be a good week. According to author Alison Isenberg, Downtown America is a “history of the place the the people who made it”. The book begins with a section on the City Beautiful movement that caused the […]

We spent last week finishing up Susan Strasser’s book, Satisfaction Guaranteed. We discussed how companies used promotions and sales to push the sale of a product. Gimmicks like coupons, redeemable points, display cases, and new “helps” were new ways of displaying products and selling modernism to consumers. A new era of retailing evolved with the […]

I spent last weekend at Virginia Beach getting horribly sunburned. When I returned to campus, my poor pink back felt like it was on fire, and I desperately needed something to cool it down. I rushed to CVS and purchased a 16 oz. bottle of Banana Boat Aloe Vera Gel. Aloe Vera, also known as […]

Last week of class was a little more digestible than the previous week of Marx and Baudrillard. By discussing Susan Strasser’s book, “Satisfaction Guaranteed”, we explored the 19th and 20th century process that took American customers and turned them into consumers. In the beginning of the 19th century, artisans produced goods. Customers bought local goods […]

A week of theory

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I was relieved to hear Professor Moon say that this week’s reading would be the most difficult all semester. Marx and Baudrillard’s theories on consumerism weren’t exactly easy bedside reading. I guess it does make sense to lay a foundation in theory for this course and then further explore the topic. Consumerism is the study […]

Crocs? Seriously?

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When my boss was sporting these shoes around the office three years ago, I was a little taken aback. Now, Jen had always had questionable taste in fashion, but when she ensured me that these “Crocs” were popular among athletes, I was amazed at what fads Americans will think are cool. I am still in […]