Write an essay that outlines that a consumer society is a divided society.

Topics: Sociology, Zygmunt Bauman, Industrial society Pages: 5 (1425 words) Published: March 19, 2014


Essay Plan

Write an essay that outlines that a consumer society is a divided society.

The principal purpose of this essay is to identify the key facts which substantiate the opinion that a consumer society is a divided society. I will examine the changes in consumer habits during the industrial and consumer societies and look at what primary factors create divisions and why. I will be using course materials ranging from written, audio and visual to determine this.

1. Definition of consumer society

2. Industrial and consumer society

I will be looking at how consuming and consumer habits have changed over the different periods.

3. Social factors and divisions

To identify the social factors that plays a part in consumer society and to identify how divisions are made in society and why?

4. The seduced and repressed

To demonstrate how members of society fall into either the seduced or repressed category, and why?

5. Conclusion

To show that I have understood the question by analysing the course material and forming a conclusion that substantiates the opinion in question.

Write an essay that outlines that a consumer society is a divided society.

Consumer society is a term used by social scientists that relates to people’s purchasing habits and how they dispose of these items, their personal skills, achievements and employment status within society (Bromley, 2009, p.13).

The term consumer society was introduced sometime after the decline of the industrial society, some 30 or so years ago. Social scientists discovered that what society had viewed as important during the industrial times had changed dramatically to what society viewed as important in contemporary society. The emphasis went from society focusing on mass production and work using large-scale power driven machinery during the industrial times, to society focusing on consumption of products and services, not just for important everyday necessities, but were also used to create personal identities and lifestyles, for pleasure, out of habit or just to fit in.

Society has been a divided society as far back as the industrial era and probably before that time. During the industrial period people were defined as upper, middle or lower class. The categorisations by class indicate there were obvious inequalities between members of society back then. It also tells you that the upper class were the wealthiest and able to, because of their wealth and status, consume effectively. To consume effectively means that you are able to afford the luxurious products and

services that possibly the middle, but definitely the lower class could not afford. Further, to possibly owning and running a successful business that helped to shape the industrial society. Effective consuming was only available to the wealthy until late in the nineteenth century, when consuming became available to the majority rather than just the minority. This was a huge turning point in shaping today’s modern contemporary society. It should be noted that divisions are still apparent in modern society, however not defined by class.

The main, but not the only factors that determine divisions within any society are wealth and status, and at times that wealth and status brings power. Wealth allows you to have the best of everything, but power can be very influential within the right circles. For example, a supermarket wants to extend its chain by erecting a store on a desolate site in Glasgow. During the process for consideration, there are residents’ against the proposed development, whilst others are for it. Anti-supermarket campaigners feel that supermarkets limit freedom and shopping choices, as local shops are unable to compete and get pushed out, whilst pro-supermarket campaigners feel that it extends their choices, as well as creating employment (Bromley, 2009, p. 69, p. 71). This is a good example of a divided society in modern...
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