Ambivalent Relationships and Projection Onto Indexical Objects

Deborah Heisley, California State University, Northridge
Deborah Cours, California State University, Northridge
It is well-established in consumer culture theory that an object’s meaning often resides in its ability to represent or trigger memories of others or relationships with others. The context of familial intergenerational transfers of gifts and heirlooms has been a particularly fertile area for investigating this phenomenon. This article draws on the findings from a study of heirlooms. It merges insights from the semiotic perspective of objects representing others with a projection perspective where consumers project their ambivalence about relationships with others onto their relationships with the objects that index those others.
[ to cite ]:
Deborah Heisley and Deborah Cours (2007) ,"Ambivalent Relationships and Projection Onto Indexical Objects", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 34, eds. Gavan Fitzsimons and Vicki Morwitz, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 636-641.