Creating and Negotiating Collective Fantasy and Play At Modern-Day Renaissance Festivals

Consumer research has explored various experiential, symbolic, and emancipatory aspects of collective consumption, as well as ways that consumers enact collective fantasies. A key feature of these shared experiences is consumer involvement in a collective vision, but prior research doesn’t examine the heterogeneity of these collective experiences or their boundary conditions. We investigate the role of heterogeneous fantasy within a collective fantasy venue drawing on participant observation at Renaissance festivals and depth interviews with participants of these events. We find collective consumption experiences contain multiple interpretations that are compatible, competing, and/or oppositional for participants. The interplay of consumers’ heterogeneous imaginative interpretations is useful in understanding the movement in and out of these imaginative spaces. We illustrate the interplay of consumers’ heterogeneous imaginative resources in the co-creation of collective consumer experiences.


Clinton D. Lanier, Jr. and Eric J. Arnould (2006) ,"Creating and Negotiating Collective Fantasy and Play At Modern-Day Renaissance Festivals", in AP - Asia-Pacific Advances in Consumer Research Volume 7, eds. Margaret Craig Lees, Teresa Davis, and Gary Gregory, Sydney, Australia : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 72-72.


Clinton D. Lanier, Jr., University of Nebraska, USA
Eric J. Arnould, University of Arizona, USA


AP - Asia-Pacific Advances in Consumer Research Volume 7 | 2006

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