I’m a barbie girl, in a barbie world. Life in plastic, it’s fantastic. You can brush my hair and undress me everywhere. Imagination, life is your creation! We all want this, we all want that… give me, give me, give me! This is our problem. We have lost the ability to sacrifice, the ability to discipline our money and ourselves.
Well, I have bad news; it is not going to get any easier. New products arrive every day, new fads, and new places to entertain us. When my parents were children their idea of entertainment was a day out on a country drive, a picnic or just kicking a ball around a park with the other children. Ha! Life now just isn’t as simple as that. We want computer games, wide screen TV’s, DVD players, surround sound, expensive restaurants, cinema, mobile phones and it does not stop. We want every new gadget that comes out and we want it so much that we convince ourselves that we need it.
We actually end up believing that the newest edition of a Nokia mobile phone is one of our basic human needs. But why do we end up purchasing all these gadgets? Why are we always broke? What kind of society is this? Just by looking at the word “consumer society” we should be able to create a picture, in our mind, of what it is. A consumer society is, among other, a society built upon choices. We choose and make decisions from we wake up until we go to sleep at night. Do we really need that expensive shampoo, with the beautiful super model on the cover, or can we buy a plain and cheaper one? Should we eat ordinary cornflakes or does it have be Kellogg’s Cornflakes because the commercial tells us it is crunchier! We are constantly bombarded by powerful advertising. On TV, on radio, in the newspaper, on the Internet, on flyers, almost everywhere we look there are advertisements.
... the principles you base your society may have the potential, if the rest of life in that society is modified enough so that ... all those in the society introduced to this idea ... eventually realize the ineffectiveness of these societies. Especially when you consider that these ways of life are simply ideas that popped into ...
We are encouraged to consume, consume, consume. Therefore we also receive a lot of strong messages. Girls, who play with dolls, get the message that looking like a Barbie doll is ideal. While in truth there are probably only 8 women out of 3 billion, who look that way. There is enough for everybody’s need but not everybody’s greed.
(Ghandi) How do our false needs affect the poor inhabitants of our world? The quote by Ghandi clearly speaks for itself. If only we did not want all these luxury items and could just settle with plainer ones. An item that could serve its purpose without the need for extra, useless gadgets. If only we, as people of the consumer society, did not buy 3 pairs of trainers when all we need is a pair at a time. Then there wouldn’t be such a high demand.
Companies, such as Nike and Adidas, are known to exploit by cheaper and often illegal labour in poorer countries. These companies continue to do this in order to feed the demand from Europe and America in as cheap and cost effective a manner as possible. To think that we, the consumer society, actually don’t know what “real needs” are. I don’t think a lot of us have ever experienced actual hunger.
It is a real need that we do not know. We always have food. We may see a lovely chocolate bar. Our stomach starts to rumble, because the chocolate looks delicious. We are hungry. No.
We are not really hungry. We are just used to eating when we feel like it. We eat for fun! The poorer people in society they eat when they can afford it. There is the difference. Is there a perfect solution? I cannot answer the question because if we do not buy then our economy would go down the drain and people in third world countries would be out of a job. On the contrary if we buy too much then we create false needs.
We make the undesirable suddenly become desirable! I wish that we could end the consumer society but I do not see it coming to an end soon. The media rules our lives. With media comes the commercials and brainwashing. People no longer reuse, repair and recycle. They simply break, bin and buy (over and over again).
Dystopian Societies in Literature and in Life Ever since man began making tools, he has been in search of a better life. For some it is not just a better life they are after but a perfect life. These people are in search of a utopia. Philosophers and novelist have been teaching classes and writing books on how to reach a perfect society with no grief or turmoil. The philosopher Karl Marx wrote " ...
Personally I blame the media.
In the old days life was simpler. We did not have all these needs because we were not confronted with “false” needs all the time. The solution is therefore to ban advertisement! Then we will not have false needs and the world will be more balanced. Right, I’ve finished this essay now so I think I’ll go down to the football court and see my friends. I can break in my new trainers and show them my AGF shirt. It cost me 500 Kr! Hang on- I’d better not forget my new mobile.
Oh wait! Since I’m using the computer then I’d better check my e-mail, and maybe I can also buy that new “thingamabob” they showed me on TV today.