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Sold AmericanConsumption and Citizenship, 1890-1945$
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Charles F. McGovern

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780807830338

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807876640_mcgovern

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Social Science and the Pragmatic Consumer, 1890–1928

Social Science and the Pragmatic Consumer, 1890–1928

(p.135) Chapter 4 Social Science and the Pragmatic Consumer, 1890–1928
Sold American

Charles F. McGovern

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter examines the emergence of the modern consumer movement, focusing on three critical social scientists who analyzed the cultural sources of demand and the conditions under which consumers spent: Thorstein Veblen, Wesley Mitchell, and Hazel Kyrk. These critics all argued that consumers assumed very specific class, gender, and cultural characteristics, and that consumption was largely shaped by cultural forces more than economic reasoning.

Keywords:   consumer movement, demand, consumers, Thorstein Veblen, Wesley Mitchell, Hazel Kyrk, class, gender, cultural forces

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