Suiting Yourself: Consumer Narratives in Hermeneutic Self-Production Through Transition

ABSTRACT - Drawing upon sensemaking theory, we argue that consumption stories form part of a broader, hermeneutic autobiographical act to produce and reproduce a consistent self as we participate in fragmented and changing social environments. Using material from a multi-method ethnographic study, we analyse two undergraduate management students’ stories of suit purchase. We argue that suit purchase is a ritual within a life passage between childhood and family and organisation and work. We show how this purchase is storied individually to achieve a consistency of self at this moment of disjuncture drawing together a past self and anticipated self around persistent and satisfying storylines.



Citation:

Gillian Hopkinson and Terry Newholm (2003) ,"Suiting Yourself: Consumer Narratives in Hermeneutic Self-Production Through Transition", in E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 6, eds. Darach Turley and Stephen Brown, Provo, UT : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 257.

European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 6, 2003      Page 257

SUITING YOURSELF: CONSUMER NARRATIVES IN HERMENEUTIC SELF-PRODUCTION THROUGH TRANSITION

Gillian Hopkinson, UMIST, UK

Terry Newholm, UMIST, UK

ABSTRACT -

Drawing upon sensemaking theory, we argue that consumption stories form part of a broader, hermeneutic autobiographical act to produce and reproduce a consistent self as we participate in fragmented and changing social environments. Using material from a multi-method ethnographic study, we analyse two undergraduate management students’ stories of suit purchase. We argue that suit purchase is a ritual within a life passage between childhood and family and organisation and work. We show how this purchase is storied individually to achieve a consistency of self at this moment of disjuncture drawing together a past self and anticipated self around persistent and satisfying storylines.

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Authors

Gillian Hopkinson, UMIST, UK
Terry Newholm, UMIST, UK



Volume

E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 6 | 2003



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