The myth of 'life-style'

Maycroft, Neil (2003) The myth of 'life-style'. In: British Sociological Association Annual Conference, ‘Desire, Excess & Waste’, April 2003, York. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

The concept of ‘life-style’ seems to have been thoroughly naturalised, both academically and in common parlance.There is little critical interrogation of what ‘life-style’ involves, beyond its connection to cultural and aesthetic aspects of consumption. What are the implications of accepting this culturalised description of consumption and its shorthand designation, ‘lifestyle’? This polemical paper interrogates both the linguistic and conceptual challenges associated with the term, and argues that it acts to efface and erase important social differences of wealth, opportunity, class, gender and ethnicity, as well as obscuring global and historical inequalities.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information:The concept of ‘life-style’ seems to have been thoroughly naturalised, both academically and in common parlance.There is little critical interrogation of what ‘life-style’ involves, beyond its connection to cultural and aesthetic aspects of consumption. What are the implications of accepting this culturalised description of consumption and its shorthand designation, ‘lifestyle’? This polemical paper interrogates both the linguistic and conceptual challenges associated with the term, and argues that it acts to efface and erase important social differences of wealth, opportunity, class, gender and ethnicity, as well as obscuring global and historical inequalities.
Keywords:Life style, Consumer culture
Subjects:L Social studies > L300 Sociology
Divisions:College of Arts > Lincoln School of Art & Design
ID Code:6776
Deposited By: Neil Maycroft
Deposited On:12 Nov 2012 07:03
Last Modified:12 Nov 2012 07:03

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