Threshold Lives: Exploring the Liminal Consumption of Tweens

The following paper details specific aspects of a research project which explores the consumer culture of a liminal group – tweens, using the anthropological theory of liminality as a lens of analysis. Constructed by child sociologists and historians and reinforced by the marketplace as the epitome of an interstitial existence, the lived experience of a tween is explored using personal diaries, in-depth interviews and accompanied shopping trips. Outcomes of one aspect of this longitudinal research project – the theory of metaconsumption - are presented, concluding that those in a shadowed reality, those social neophytes no longer children but not yet teens engage with consumption practices and spaces particular to those who must exist mid-way between two spheres of identity. Thus this shadowed reality, this socially indiscernible identity belies agentive consumption and active engagement with signifiers of a duality of mediated selves.


Kevina Cody, Katrina Lawlor, and Pauline Maclaran (2010) ,"Threshold Lives: Exploring the Liminal Consumption of Tweens", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 346-351 .


Kevina Cody, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland, UK
Katrina Lawlor, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland, UK
Pauline Maclaran, Royal Holloway, University of London, UK


NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37 | 2010

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