The idea that the over-arching goal of capitalist economies needs to be changed, and that achieving ever-higher levels of consumption of products and services is a vacuous goal, has followed a familiar tri-stage evolution—several times over. Radical rejections of the consumeristic goal have been followed by rejections of the rejections and new bouts of consumerism, leading to some kind of combination of an affirmation of the merits of a high level of consumption with a rededication to other purposes. This idea itself has been with us from the onset of industrialization. It often has taken the form of comparing the attractive life of the poorer pre-industrial artisan to that of the drudgeries of the more endowed industrial assembly-line worker.
- Knowledge Object
- Conspicuous Consumption
- Psychological Implication
- York Time Magazine
- Voluntary Simplicity
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The author would like to acknowledge Frank Lovett for his help with the research for this paper, and David Karp and Barbara Fusco for their editorial comments. I am particularly indebted to comments by Professor Edward F.Diener and David G. Myers.
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© 1999 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
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Etzioni, A. (1999). Voluntary Simplicity: Characterization, Select Psychological Implications, and Societal Consequences. In: Essays in Socio-Economics. Studies in Economic Ethics and Philosophy. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-03900-7_1
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