Write a 1200-1500 word essay on an aspect of everyday life and explain what it tells us about the people who consume/participate in it, as well as what it says about modern life
‘What we all do everyday, what we take for granted and can rarely explain. . . [may] reveal a great deal about ourselves and modern life’ (Finkelstein, J 1994: XIII).
Choose a topic or aspect of everyday life and explain what it tells us about the people who consume/participate in it, as well as what it says about modern life. Your analysis should focus on a single activity, product or space in everyday life. You may want to use Finkelstein’s entries in her ‘A-Z of Consumer Pleasures’ as a template. You should focus on any of the themes/ topics discussed in the unit, but you may also select any other topic that interests you. However, in your essay you need to employ at least two of the concepts and/or theories studied in the unit (for example, gender, class, taste, presentation of the self, rationalization, consumption, commodification, ritual, modernity, postmodernity), as well as cite scholarly references in support of your interpretation.
Begin your essay by describing your observation, activity or product in everyday life; then apply the relevant sociological theories/concepts in your analysis and demonstrate what it reveals about ourselves and the social forces that shape our everyday lives. Lectures from Weeks 1-4 are particularly relevant to the essay.