A fascinating new study in the Journal of Consumer Research looks at the role advertising has played in China’s transformation. Authors Xin Zhao (University of Hawaii at Manoa) and Russell W. Belk (York University, Toronto) analyzed advertisements in the Chinese media for clues on how sociological and ideological change has taken place in the People’s Republic.
Advertising is the major propaganda vehicle for consumerism, and an excellent arena to explore China’s changing values, explain the authors: “We examine how advertising appropriates a dominant anti-consumerist political ideology to promote consumption within China’s social and political transition.”
The researchers studied advertisements in the People’s Daily, the oldest and largest newspaper in China, as well as additional sources. By taking a close look at the ads, the authors observed the ways advertisers utilized communist symbols and messages. “Throughout the 1980s and even today, sacred political icons such as red stars and red flags, which used to be closely connected with the power and ideology of Chinese communism, have often been co-opted in advertising to promote consumer goods from color TVs to refrigerators,” write the authors.
The research examined how advertisers transformed socialist economic goals of modernization into consumer messages designed to make consumers feel they were a part of China’s transformation.
The authors believe that China’s lessons are applicable to other developing economies. “Never in the course of human history have a larger number of people gained more wealth in such a short time. China provides an unprecedented opportunity to examine the rise of consumerism in the contemporary world and similar patterns likely exist in other societies,” the authors conclude.
Xin Zhao and Russell W. Belk. “Politicizing Consumer Culture: Advertising’s Appropriation of Political Ideology in China’s Social Transition” Journal of Consumer Research: August 2008.
Founded in 1974, the Journal of Consumer Research publishes scholarly research that describes and explains consumer behavior. Empirical, theoretical, and methodological articles spanning fields such as psychology, marketing, sociology, economics, and anthropology are featured in this interdisciplinary journal. The primary thrust of JCR is academic, rather than managerial, with topics ranging from micro-level processes (e.g., brand choice) to more macro-level issues (e.g., the development of materialistic values).
Rudy Faust | EurekAlert!
The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change
17.11.2017 | Deutsches Zentrum für integrative Biodiversitätsforschung (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
Win-win strategies for climate and food security
02.10.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine
17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses