Transnational consumer culture and middle class professionals : an ethnographic account of consumption and identity in post-reform China

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Transnational consumer culture and middle class professionals : an ethnographic account of consumption and identity in post-reform China

 

Author: Elfick, Tse-mui Jacqueline
Title: Transnational consumer culture and middle class professionals : an ethnographic account of consumption and identity in post-reform China
Degree: Ph.D.
Year: 2009
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Consumer behavior -- China
Middle class -- China -- Economic conditions.
Group identity -- China.
Department: School of Design
Pages: xii, 218 p. ; 31 cm.
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b2342997
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/5676
Abstract: This is an ethnographic account examining the role of consumption practices and narratives of transnational capitalism in the construction of urban middle class identity. Improved access to mass media and communication technologies has exposed individuals to transnational consumer culture. Many young professionals aspire to link themselves with this culture as it invokes status and implies sophistication. Transnational consumer identity as negotiated in Shenzhen emphasizes the consumption of experiences as well as goods. This constitutes an epistemological shift in the study of consumption as traditionally the focus has been on the consumption of goods. In Shenzhen, having the means that permit the frequent consumption of transnational consumer experiences, as well as an understanding of how to engage in these experiences appropriately, has come to constitute middle class identity.

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