Here it goes… my first out of ten entries in the compact challenge. This is going to be a long, grueling, and hard ten-week “experiment.” When the professor listed items not included in the challenge, like purchasing socks, soap, underwear, and food… I had my fingers crossed. Was I the only one hoping that she would have included clothes, accessories, and beauty products in this list? Or maybe, just maybe, that this challenge was just an early April Fool’s prank in January.
Quite honestly, I probably shop and buy more junk than anyone I know. In my defense, Kawamura states that fashion is “never fixed and ever changing” (4). What's in style today, may not be tomorrow. Is that why girl’s closets are so full? Not to exaggerate, but I am a shopaholic that has been suckered (maybe not) in the consumer culture, and it is a problem I intend not to confront, until now.
I found Kawamura’s section about the female opponent’s argument against fashion to be fascinating. Kawamura states that contemporary feminists feel that “…beauty is that fashion emerges out of the desire to be beautiful, the norm for which is created by men in male-dominated society” (11). I would have to agree more with the female proponents of fashion that fashion playfully transgresses gender boundaries. Fashion plays no role in oppression of women, but influences the way she comes to think of herself. I believe fashion goes for both male and female, and it is likely that consumer culture has influence this consciousness of buy, buy, and buy to look good.
I decided to do Google search on “consumer culture.” In a quick 0.21 seconds search, Google came back with over 57 million links. One of the links that caught my attention was Eartheasy, a sustainable living website encourages people to live healthy, eat well, grow plants, etc. The website had a blog entry about the consumer culture not being an accident. David Suzuki writes, “Much of what we purchase is not essential for our survival or even basic human comfort but is based on impulse, novelty, a momentary desire. And there is a hidden price that we, nature, and future generations will pay for it too.” Maybe it’s finally time we put that plastic card away…
Entry # 1
Kawamura, Yuniya. Fashion-ology: An Introduction to Fashion Studies. New York: Berg, 2005.
Suzuki, David. “Consumer Culture is No Accident.” 25 Mar 2009. <http://www.eartheasy.com/blog/2009/03/consumer-culture-is-no-accident/>.