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Title:Consumer Pride and Consumption-Based Family Rituals: A Field Study in Zagreb, Croatia
Author(s):Sredl, Katherine Christina
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Cele C. Otnes; Nelson, Michelle R.
Department / Program:Communications
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Sociology, Individual and Family Studies
Abstract:Consumer emotions are rarely examined from a phenomenological perspective, with few exceptions. Moreover, consumer pride is overlooked as an influence on the marketplace practices of consumers. In spite of the lack of theoretical development on consumer pride, it clearly drives consumption: take, for instance, consumers who use goods to communicate success. Thus, it is important to understand how consumers conceptualize pride and how pride influences consumer behavior. One consumer practice that generates emotion and involves consumption is ritual. According to Collins' Interaction Ritual Chain (2004), elements of sustained rituals such as Sunday family dinner reinforce expression of emotion and the status of symbolic goods. Thus, this dissertation investigates how consumption-based family rituals elicit pride. It takes an ethnographic approach, using long interviews and participant observation. The focus is on working class, middle class, and upper middle class Sunday family dinners in contemporary Zagreb, Croatia. Findings indicate three stereotyped components of the ritual - time, aesthetic goods, and family - are integral to eliciting pride. Together, these elements create moments for experiencing pride, provide goods for eliciting and communicating pride, and reinforce group hierarchies and emotional bonds. The ritual expresses pride in cultural continuity in the context of globalization. Furthermore, cultural norms affirm pride and discourage hubris. A construct of consumer pride is offered in the conclusion, based on the findings, with reference to social psychology scholarship on pride. Consumer pride is an adaptive, positively valenced, self-conscious emotion, felt in the body, emergent in socially situated action, to which consumers ascribe culturally bound meaning, before, during and after interactions. Consumer pride is bolstered by acknowledgement of the self as responsible for socially valued outcomes, by display and use of goods and services, and by feedback from others. Pride is an enduring emotion that moderates consumption choices by motivating consumers to perform social roles through consumption, and to elicit recognition of individual achievement through consumption and social display. In sum, this dissertation argues that consumers experience specific emotions (pride) in rituals and presents a definition of consumer pride. It also argues that consumers use aesthetic goods to express pride.
Issue Date:2009
Description:233 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2009.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3392482
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-28
Date Deposited:2009

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