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Jeanne Guien - Le Consumérisme à travers ses objets

Jeanne Guien - Le Consumérisme à travers ses objets

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What is consumerism? How do we get used to over-consumption, to the point of forgetting how to do without it, how we did before, how we will do after? To answer these questions, Jeanne Guien turns to everyday objects: cups, display cases, handkerchiefs, deodorants, smartphones. Five objects to which our gestures and senses have been educated, five objects that are banal yet opaque, utilitarian yet overloaded with value, sublimated yet soon to be discarded. By tracing their history, this book aims to show how the taste for everything that's new, fast, personalized and paying for itself is born. For the industries that shape our world not only create objects, they also create behaviors. So consumerism is not so much the moral vice of "spoiled" societies as a matter of production and design. To understand how our actions are determined by seemingly innocuous products is to question the possibility of freeing them.

Jeanne Guien, a former student at the École normale supérieure, has a doctorate in philosophy and is an agrégée. In 2019, she defended a thesis at Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne University devoted to the notion of obsolescence, studying the history of debates around the lifespan of means of production and consumer goods. A member of CETCOPRA and LISRA, and co-organizer of the Second Life of Objects seminar (Mines, EHESS), she also conducts research-action experiments on biffins (street salvagers in the Ile-de-France region), freeganism (food salvaging), municipal waste collection and anti-advertising. She also hosts a radio program and a blog on médiapart, to publicize certain social and political issues linked to waste: working conditions of garbage collectors and biffins, "circular economy" policies, environmental injustices in France, unequal distribution of the "ecologist" label in struggles and social movements.

Published 12 November 21
228 pages
ISBN: 9791097088422

© Editions Divergences 

Essay •  Society

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