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Prepare an argument for a debate on the topic: The growth of the 'consumer culture' has enriched our lives.

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Introduction

Prepare an argument for a debate on the topic: The growth of the 'consumer culture' has enriched our lives. You should arguer in the affirmative or the negative. Set text + other related texts Consumer culture has definitely not enriched our lives in the society we live in. This dangerous culture is driven by fabricated promotional material that deceives in order to sell. Trends in popular culture, especially in the music industry have influenced our youth, and the pursuit of 'happiness' has driven us to buy new yet unnecessary novelties. This aspect of living does not enrich our lives, but subjects it to more stress, chaos and dependence on money. In my argument, I will examine how Fisher & Paykal have exploited television to enhance the image of their new line of fridges. We will see from the multimedia cdrom Real Wild Child, the origins of the consumerist lifestyle in Australia and what effects it has had on our society, as well as examining a more contemporary view of the issue, from the economist Ross Gittins in his article "Why happiness won't last" (Sept 02 'The Age'). If getting deceived is your favourite style of 'life enrichment', perhaps you should watch Fisher & Paykal's ad for their 'Active Smart' refrigerator. ...read more.

Middle

The reason for the change in attitude towards spending is no doubt due to the evolution of the 'teenager' who demanded his own identity and independence from the 'household'. This aspect of our history is illustrated by the 50's milk bar in which posters of teenage idols can be seen all over the rooms and the renowned juke box has its own corner of the store. Because of these features, this cdrom can be perceived as an educational tool. It informs its audience about facts, but it still targets an audience because of its position as a consumer product. Today's teenager would be drawn to RWC because of its funky, mambo style graphics and complete interactivity. Whilst the older generation is drawn to the many nostalgic memories that are created by the skilfully crafted d�cor of each room containing the many icons, sounds and colours of the period it is depicting. The attitude of the makers of RWC to the development of the consumerist culture however is very positive one, despite some of the shocking information it reveals about its history. The ever-present drug culture that is the focus in the 'Hippie House' was a result of teenagers seeking an alternative lifestyle to that of their parents. ...read more.

Conclusion

What may seem like an exciting new product in our lives, quickly becomes what we are used to having and come to expect. The use of statistical information in Gittins' article makes his language very persuasive in its argument. Such phrases like "Yesterday's luxuries become today's necessities", emphasis his point, yet do it in a manner which gets straight to the point. Gittens also revealed in his article that humans always seem to think that just a little more money will make them happier. This drive for more money and supposedly more happiness is known as the "hedonistic treadmill", a metaphor appropriately used by Gittens to show the incredible power of the lure of wealth and the search of happiness. It is probably the reason why we are not satisfied by money and material possessions which the consumerist culture is offering us by day and by night. (Comment on the rhetorical elements of this article. How does he use language to persuade us of his position?- rhetorical q's, survey results, emotive language/imagery??) In conclusion, we are not the benefactors of the growing consumerist culture. Our lives have become more complicated, demanding and stressful if anything, because of these absurd possessions that we think give us happiness. We are constantly examining the lives of the rich, successful, the famous and the glamorous, whether in business, music or film, in a futile effort to improve our normal, everyday lives. ...read more.

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