Consumer Society, Secularization and Three Modes of Ethics


An analysis of religious living in a consumer society can be achieved by taking three different dimensions
of consumption into consideration. The first comprises rational processes that are clearly defined, both in
terms of function and goals on the basis of capitalist production as a system of consumption. This process
also covers transforming goods into merchandize with regard to the manufacturing of the symbolic and
emblematic meaning of goods together with the commodity. The second dimension is the emergence of the
consumer society in which the symbolic and emblematic order has been established through produced merchandize. In a consumer society, merchandize undertakes the construction of the aesthetic, ethical/moral, and cognitive rationalities and practices of the individuals belonging to that society. The third dimension is the emergence of the consumer world produced by the consumers of that society. Therefore, consumers are not passive objects of the consumption system but, in effect, active participants.


Ethics Secularization Consumption system Consumer society Consumer world Commodification of religion Commodification of subject Desire Construction of irrationality Construction non-rationality