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Instead, the continued thriving of consumerism is due to our own innate needs, desires and aspirations.The article by Randall Patterson titled ‘Profiles in Splurging’ complements Twitchell’s core thesis.
Twitchell is not blind to the obvious flaws of consumerist culture.
Going by the centrality that society offers material possessions it would then appear that the poor lack meaning and inevitably faces exclusion from society.
But through numerous apt examples and nuanced explanations, Twitchell comes around to acknowledge the power of consumerist impulses and seeks to explain what drives them.
He also argues that capitalist consumerism is not something that is imposed on people as academic critics often claim.A look at the social stratification will confirm that the more one owns the higher they are to climb the ladder of status and prestige.For instance, I imagine the guards in an exclusive hotel are more likely to open the gate for an expensive looking top of the range car than they are for a homeless man or generally disheveled individual.The most direct route to that is to buy and flaunt.It is as if most Americans would pick money over happiness if they had a chance.The rest will save until they can afford the device; however, some months down the line, when they are almost achieving this end, a new more expensive model is unveiled and quickly grabbed by the rich as the rest are left in second place as always.This cycle of changing trends and fashions is what ultimately drives consumerism and manipulates many Americans to keep buying items not for the items own sake but to enhance their identity.This is because the consumerist society in which we exist sustains itself by excluding anyone who does not conform to the culture of endless buying and since human beings are social creatures, most of us try to keep up with the consumerist trends (Twitchell).The ‘cool’ and successful individuals and groups at the top of the chain who are the subject of the collective admiration from the less successful are extremely dynamic.This essay will qualify the aforementioned working thesis by considering all the facts and arguments presented in these two articles.To a great extent, the claim in the working thesis can be viewed as a logical one and there is evidence all around us that validates and supports it.