Shopping: Material Culture Perspectives

Cover: Shopping: Material Culture Perspectives
Deborah C. Andrews

David L. Ames; J. Ritchie Garrison; Jay Gitlin; Gretchen Herrmann; Sandy Isenstadt; McKay Jenkins; Anne Krulikowski; Martha Rosler; Helen Sheumaker; Susan Strasser and Lance Winn

November 2014 • ISBN 9781644530498 • $47.00

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The degree to which shopping, or, more broadly, consumerism, is both critiqued and defended in American society confirms the role that commercial goods play in our daily lives. This collection of essays provides case studies depicting selected aspects of this engaging activity. The authors include several historians with diverging specialties: an art historian, an anthropologist, an environmental journalist, a geographer and urban planner, and practicing artists. Each author demonstrates how a material culture perspective—a focus on the relationship between people and their things—can illuminate a specific corner of consumption. Connecting the essays are concerns about the spaces in which shopping occurs; about the experience of shopping itself, both individual and social; and about its economic, environmental, and personal downsides. Collectively, these essays demonstrate how a material culture perspective on shopping yields insights into multiple aspects of American culture.

About the Editor

Deborah C. Andrews is Professor of English at the University of Delaware and directs the university’s Center for Material Culture Studies.