Good Example Of Essay On Sociology of Consumption
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Sociology of Consumption
During the past few months, I have analyzed my purchasing record and understood my consumption habits. As such, I have realized that this purchasing record and consumption habits speak about my identity and personality. The analysis of my purchases has led me to understand and develop a clear picture of what I buy and how it influences who I am as an individual. Looking at my consumption journal, I realized the purchases I have made during this period reflect my age, social class, gender, and sexuality. The items that I purchase reflect my identity. In addition, most of the purchases that I make seem to be made to the restaurants and the cafes. I spent most of my money on the beverages and foods. For this reason, this aspect could suggest that I prefer doing luxury shopping. My consumption behavior influences my identity because it defines who I am in terms of shopping, purchasing and consumption. Identities are elemental and they are diversified. As such, my consumption makes me gauge myself around people. For this reason, having similarities in consumption and purchasing behavior assists me in identifying myself as a group of individuals with such preferences.
Nevertheless, despite the conception that individuals with similar purchasing and consumption habits, often the majority, represent what the people need in the markets, I believe that there is a difference in what individuals buy, where they buy them, and how much they spend on the items. Personally, I stick to my purchasing and consumption habits regardless of the preferences of the majority. I also believe that my consumption and purchasing behavior is shaped by the concepts of social life and objectivity. These concepts encompass the acts of appraisals and evaluations. Positive appraisal and recognition by other individuals influences my self-evaluation as well as self-esteem (Shields and Langman 43). Over the period, I have realized when I bought an item and received an appraisal; I went back for another of the similar kind or an item of a similar brand. At the same time, my identity or self negotiates the reality, initiates various social interactions, and formulates the goals to achieve certain consumption and purchasing objectives and goals, which often bring me a rewarding recognition that is satisfaction in this case.
The concepts of the autonomous self with the real of the private subjectivity also play a role in my consumption habits as wells as purchasing trends and preferences. That is; they influence my desires, feelings, and personal thoughts. I found out that these are the core elements that influence my tastes and preferences in the purchasing of items. I buy what I desire to buy because of my thoughts about the item. This element of subjectivity transforms my preferences by enabling the formation of a foundational elements and regarding the items I intend to purchase. Individualism is another important aspect that influences my consumption trends considerably. I have a distinct way of choosing the items I need to buy by focusing on my ideas concerning the product. I believe that my opinion leads to my satisfaction because it creates a sense of autonomy in the products that I purchase (Shields and Langman 47).
Branding is another essential aspect that contributes to my purchasing and consumption habits. I believe that brands communicate a sense of quality, durability, and affordability. Therefore, I can buy an item by virtue of its brand. I prefer durable, affordable and high quality items for my satisfactions. Items that do not have such characteristics often do not entice me into buying. My ideological viewpoint is also another important aspect that contributes to my behavior in terms of consumption and purchasing. That is, I can develop my understanding and preference of an item, especially the non-food items, and purchase it by virtue of my conception (Shields and Langman 48). This ideological viewpoint also enables me to try to figure out the future implications in terms of factors such as the price of a good before I embark on purchasing it. I apply this element when purchasing items such as shoes and clothes that I am likely to use them for long. This, I have my own distinct way of choosing the items that I need to purchase.
I bought my items at the following significant items, including Tank Noodle, Chipotle, Café Descartes Company, Connections Café Loyola, New 400 Theatres, Damen Food Court, Steak ‘N Shake, and CVS Company. Others include the Great Wall Chinese Rest, Kafein Coffee Evanson, Abercrombie& Fitch, and Akira-Old Orchard. These places influenced the manner and the progress through which I purchase them. Purchasing the items is an integral aspect of my trend and preferences for the goods that I buy. The routines of everyday life influence my purchasing behavior especially at the school café. The activities that I engage in everyday define my pattern in the consumptions and purchasing of items.
In these daily encounters, I focus on the brand of the products and items that I intend to purchase. I consider various aspects such as the brand equity when purchasing or planning to purchase a given product. Brand equity is an essential element that determines the extent to which the I place value the product offered by a given market, rest, brand or café, especially when purchasing items such as the hunter book socks and heel grips at Akira or a line of products. In this case, brand equity surfaces in the brand salience, brand performance, brand imagery, brand judgment, brand feelings and brand perception.
The brand salience surfaces in the breadth of the awareness of the brand. The awareness is considerably strong as I consider it as an option when choosing variant product categories like biscuits, snacks and chocolates. The depth of the brand awareness is moderately strong because it often is not at the top of my priorities when I consider purchasing snacks or chocolates; the target of various brands is in the categories of brands. However, the brand that I choose is comparatively strong in clarity and strength with consideration to the category membership. In addition, I always consider the top brands in the market that I would easily recall in the categories.
I judge the products that I purchase to deliver good quality products at affordable prices. Furthermore, I prefer the durability of the products that I purchase by determining its state in the market in terms of competitiveness. I develop attitudes towards the products that I buy as well as the places from where I purchase these items. This element would explain why some of the materials and places are recurrent on my consumption journal. Examples of recurring places include the CVS Pharmacy, the Damen Food Court, and Connections café Loyola. Recurrent items include the snacks, groceries, coffee, and soda. Therefore, the brand evokes laid-backness feelings in me, influencing my preference for the item. Other brands strongly resonate with my preferences and needs because of their unique taste, attractive packages and affordable prices, which evoke positive perceptions of the brand as magnificent.
The emotional constellations and the attachments that I have for various items define my purchasing and consumption behavior by developing an acute subjectivity to these elements. I have the tendency of picking the items that I require or prefer by self-evaluating my position and feeling toward the given product. For this reason, most of the items that I purchase are emotion based and they cut across both the items and the places where I prefer to buy the items.
I do not have a job with an income; I get monthly allowances from my parents and I never had to save any money until the day I receive the allowances at that time during the month. The current rate of savings in the U.S. is in the negative. However, I often spend all the allowances I receive from parents on the things that I need to purchase. However, I have disciplined myself in a financial context such that I do not have any debt by the time I receive my allowances after my expenditures. I am not able to save any money because most of the things that I buy are equivalent to the allowances that I receive regularly from my parents. I have a feeling that my spending pattern would be different if I had to work for the money that I spend. Given that I am sure of receiving money regularly in the form of allowances, some of my purchases would be different because I would be reluctant to spend the money on anything that would make me feel I was being extravagant (Fischer, 23). I am certain that some of the things I buy in terms of clothing and another person who receives lesser money in the form of allowances may perceive accessories as a luxury.
On the other hand, my inability to save can also be seen as weakness when it comes to managing money. Good management of money means that I should have some part of the allowance I received in the previous period by the time my parents decide to give me more in the preceding period. Most of my money is spent on hunter boots from Akira. The following is a description of the items in full:
Akira has a variety of boots in their collection. They are fashionable rain boots designed to make people look fashionable and trendy in spite of the rainy conditions. There is a variety of boots in the store and I have a tendency of buying every new model to fit my dressing needs. In fact, I buy the boots even after the rainy season because some of the designs can be worn even in the dry season. Most of the boots reach the edge of the knees. The colors vary between black and brown although it is also easy to find a boot that has both colors on its pattern.
Hunter boots have dry knitting and a glossy finish that makes them easy to clean and maintain. The boots have a comfortable lining in the inner part that helps maintain a cool temperature even when they are worn in hot weather. In most cases, I wear my boots with jeans, which adds to my purchasing trends because they help me complement my dressing style. In the past month, I have my purchases at Akira stores and that is where in spending most of my allowances. In fact, I can buy used items as long as they help me meet my most important needs and help me make good use of the allowances that I receive from my parents within certain periods.
I am interested in learning and understanding where the items that I buy came from and how they are manufactured. Having such knowledge is important for because it enables me relate the prices of the commodity and the quality in terms of the materials used by the manufacturers (Fischer, 12). I do not seek to own expensive items in my life. As long as they are able to make me meet my basic needs, then I can buy the commodities. I believe that my purchasing habits define the person I am because I buy anything that I feel is necessary and I also try to minimize my expenditure.
Finally, of everything I bought over the few months, I roughly have 20% I still physically have. Since most of what you bought was food that is why I still have only around 10% of everything I bought I still have food. Since the other objects I shopped out of necessity were clothes from Abercrombie and Fitch, Victoria’s Secret, Akira and boots from Colombia, my number would be closer to 10% or so, which in total makes 20%.
Fischer, Christian. "The Complexities of Modern Food Consumption and Implications for International Food Product Marketers." Journal of International Food & Agribusiness Marketing (2006): n. pag. Print.
Shields, Rob, and Lauren Langman. "Neon Cages: Shopping for Subjectivity." Lifestyle Shopping: The Subject of Consumption. London: Routledge, 1992. Print.
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