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Bought and SoldLiving and Losing the Good Life in Socialist Yugoslavia$
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Patrick Hyder Patterson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801450044

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801450044.001.0001

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Loving It

Loving It

Ordinary People, Everyday Life, and the Power of Consumption

(p.252) 7 Loving It
Bought and Sold

Patrick Hyder Patterson

Cornell University Press

This chapter shows that ordinary Yugoslavs often really were “sold” on what the Yugoslav system promised to deliver: they loved their consumer culture and they celebrated their chance to participate in it. Many, if not most, ordinary citizens of Yugoslavia were neither especially disturbed by market culture nor much concerned about its potentially harmful effects. For the Yugoslav “man on the street,” and, just as important, his female counterpart, the polemics launched against consumerism never seem to have had the profound chastening effect that critics desired. This chapter examines how the critique of consumerism triggered a serious and uncompromising backlash against critics, as well as the role of mass media, including television, in showcasing the public mood toward questions of consumption and consumer wealth. It also considers public opinion regarding the culture of abundance associated with consumerism.

Keywords:   consumer culture, Yugoslavia, market culture, consumerism, mass media, television, consumption, consumer wealth, abundance

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