Berkeley Philosophy Reading Group Message Board › Consumerism: a peripatetic philosophy meetup, Sat. 12/11 at noon

Consumerism: a peripatetic philosophy meetup, Sat. 12/11 at noon

user 5618101
Group Organizer
Berkeley, CA
Announcing a new meeting of the Berkeley Philosophy Reading Group!

What: Consumerism: a peripatetic meeting
When: Saturday, December 11, 2010, from 12 noon until 2 p.m.
Where: Westfield San Francisco Centre, 845 Market St. (at Powell St. BART)
Cost: $2 per person, to help pay for website

Consumerism has been defined as "a way of life combining material affluence with symbolic-emotional attachments to shopping, possessions and 'waste.'"

This will be a peripatetic meeting, meaning that we walk around while we discuss philosophy. During this dark, cold, and wet season, we will enjoy the bright, warm and dry interior of Westfield San Francisco Centre, located right at the Powell St. BART station, a 25-minute ride from downtown Berkeley. We'll share our insights as we gawk our way through Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom and some of the 168 smaller boutiques in this 9-floor mall during prime shopping season.

Let's meet at noon at the bottom of the escalators at the lowest level, in the Food Emporium seating area. N.B.: There are two food courts at this level. The BART station opens up to the cheaper one. But if you turn left and continue, when you pass the Bristol Farms grocery store, you'll be at the more upscale Food Emporium, where we'll meet.


  • "Conspicuous Consumption", chapter 4 of The Theory of the Leisure Class: An Economic Study of Institutions (1899) by the American economist and sociologist Thorstein Veblen

  • "Two Cheers for Materialism" (1999) by James Twitchell, Professor of English and Advertising at the University of Florida

  • "Spent: America after consumerism" (2009) by the German-Israeli-American sociologist Amitai Etzioni­

  • "I Hate Myself and Want to Buy", chapter 4 of Nation of Rebels: Why Counterculture Became Consumer Culture (2004), by Canadian philosophers Joseph Heath and Andrew Potter
    (In the Files section; login to required. You'll probably need to Rotate View in your PDF reader.)

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