With the advent of liquid modernity, the society of producers istransformed into a society of consumers. In this new consumersociety, individuals become simultaneously the promoters ofcommodities and the commodities they promote. They are, at one andthe same time, the merchandise and the marketer, the goods and thetravelling salespeople. They all inhabit the same social space thatis customarily described by the term the market.
The test they need to pass in order to acquire the social prizesthey covet requires them to recast themselves as products capableof drawing attention to themselves. This subtle and pervasivetransformation of consumers into commodities is the most importantfeature of the society of consumers. It is the hidden truth, thedeepest and most closely guarded secret, of the consumer society inwhich we now live.
In this new book Zygmunt Bauman examines the impact ofconsumerist attitudes and patterns of conduct on various apparentlyunconnected aspects of social life politics and democracy, socialdivisions and stratification, communities and partnerships,identity building, the production and use of knowledge, and valuepreferences.
The invasion and colonization of the web of human relations bythe worldviews and behavioural patterns inspired and shaped bycommodity markets, and the sources of resentment, dissent andoccasional resistance to the occupying forces, are the centralthemes of this brilliant new book by one of the worlds mostoriginal and insightful social thinkers.