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Mass-consumption as an activator of sustainable consumerist potentials

  • Magnus Boström
  • Mikael Klintman
Publishing year: 2018-06-11
Language: English
Pages: 1-1
Document type: Conference paper: abstract
Additional info: Paper presented at IST-2018, the 9th International Sustainability Transitions Conference, Manchester 11-14 June 2018

Abstract english

This chapter focuses on the relation between mass-consumption and sustainable consumption.
Mass-consumption concerns the omnipresent role of consumption in contemporary societies
with its problems of excessive resource use in current practices of consumption. The late
modern context and forces of mass-consumption can both trigger and prevent sustainable
consumption as well as shape its outcome. Through a literature review, both the examples of
alternative consumption (e.g. buycotts) and various kinds of anti-consumption, which involve
politically motivated ambitions to cut down on consumption, are addressed. The chapter
addresses different ways in how mass-consumption activates sustainable consumerist
potentials, including sentiments towards anti-consumption. It also shows how massconsumption
makes people unable to link consumption to political considerations, and enters
paths towards political anti-consumerism or realise their ambitions. Finally, the chapter
analyses possibilities and difficulties transforming niche sustainable consumerist initiatives to
the mainstream in a society dominated by mass consumption.


  • Sociology


9th International Sustainability Transitions Conference
2018-06-12 - 2019-06-14
Manchester, United Kingdom
Mikael Klintman
E-mail: mikael [dot] klintman [at] soc [dot] lu [dot] se



+46 70 284 55 48

+46 70 284 55 48


Sociologiska institutionen, Paradisgatan 5, Hus G, Lund


Sociologist with a broad, human scientific interest in social, economic and evolutionary dimensions of environmental and health related problems.

Department of Sociology
Lund University
Visiting address: Sandgatan 11, House G, Lund
Postal address: Box 114 , SE-221 00 LUND, SWEDEN
Telephone: Student Office +46 46-222 88 44, Lund University Switchboard +46 46-222 00 00

Faculty of Social Sciences