CONSUMER CULTURE: GLOBALISATION, MATERIALISM & RESISTANCE
Discuss the extent to which the globalisation of consumer culture engenders a cosmopolitan culture, where individuals show ‘openness toward a divergent cultural experiences’ (Hannerz 1990: 239). You should discuss your essay using theories of cultural globalisation introduced to you in the lecture and illustrate your arguments with supporting examples.
Key Theories and Suggestions:
• John Tomlinson (2003): Globalisation and Culture
• George Ritzer (2006): The McDonalisation of Society
• Adorno and Horkheimer (1944/2000): The Culture Industry
• Arjun Appadurai (1988): Indigenization
• Hannerz (1990): Cosmopolitanism
• Daniel Miller (1995): Worlds apart: Modernity through the prism of the local
address the question asked and not try to re-define, ‘twist it round’, or state it in more general terms -to allow you to write about something else. In order to remind yourself of this, always put the question addressed at the beginning of your work. ‘Not answering the question’ will result in a significant loss of marks.
• You must demonstrate ability to synthesize key theories and concepts and develop key themes and/or arguments.
• Your essay must be supported by illustrative examples and/or case studies. You are allowed to use supporting media and/or materials (such as images, sound and other medium).
• Being asked to discuss something is not the same as being asked to list statements. A discussion will consider alternative points of view and your own thinking and evaluation should be apparent in the discussion of the topic.
• Your essay must be properly referenced:
o only sources referred to specifically in the text of your answer should be included in the bibliography;
o all sources (including those for any numeric examples used) should be acknowledged;
o there should be no references in your answer to sources which are not in your bibliography BUT if you have not consulted the reference directly yourself you should indicate in the text of your answer the secondary source from which is comes. It is this secondary source that should be in your bibliography.
• Listing a reference in the bibliography does not make it acceptable to copy sections of the book into your answer unless it is explicitly stated as a quotation. You must summarise the points in your own words. Plagiarism is regarded as a most serious instance of academic misconduct and is dealt with accordingly.
• It is expected that you will consult academic and professional journals as well as textbooks. Many textbooks cover much the same information so consulting many different textbooks only results to duplicating this information. Textbooks tend not to have very up to date content and journal sources are vital for this.
• Before you write your essay, work out on paper a detailed outline of your argument.
• In the essay introduction, you should set out your main themes and intentions: describe the issue you are addressing, the illustrative case or contexts you are going to discuss (if any), identify its main components, and indicate what you are going to do in the body of your essay.
• Break down your arguments into main parts – use this as a basis of your essay that will then be divided up into several sections (you may want to have a section title for each section).
• Build up your argument point-by-point, section-by-section, so that you develop a picture that slowly develops in the reader’s mind.
• Always try to put yourself in the position of a critical reader, ask yourself how s/he would react to your essay, how s/he would understand it and be persuaded by it.
• Do not simply describe the ideas and literature you’re dealing with, provide a critical evaluation.
• Summarise your arguments in conclusion. What is the main significance of what you have been saying?
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