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Conspicuous Consumption by Thorsten Veblen
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Conspicuous Consumption (1899)

by Thorsten Veblen

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This work demonstrates how the behaviours of the upper classes in a feudal system - the warriors, the priests, the landowners - continued into the industrial era. The old upper classes, who indulged in useless activities that made no contribution to the economy or to the production of the useful goods and services that keep society functioning, were joined or replaced by the business class represented by the men who owned the means of production. The Capitalists, in other words. With great wryness, Veblen unpicks all that is unfair in a society that is built around rewarding the idle rich and keeping down the working poor. He begins with a study of how what he calls the Leisure Class came to exist and how it then begat the servant class to administer to its needs, ending with the hypocrisy of the wealthy considering themselves fit to consume drugs and alcohol to excess while denigrating the working class and women as dissolute for the same behaviour. I really enjoyed reading it. ( )
  missizicks | Feb 8, 2018 |
From: Publisher

The perfect books for the true book lover, Penguin’s Great Ideas series features twelve more groundbreaking works by some of history’s most prodigious thinkers. Each volume is beautifully packaged with a unique type-driven design that highlights the bookmaker’s art. Offering great literature in great packages at great prices, this series is ideal for those readers who want to explore and savor the Great Ideas that have shaped our world. ( )
  gregsmith | Jul 13, 2006 |
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The institution of a leisure class is found at its best development at the higher stages of the barbarian culture; as, for instance, in feudal Europe or feudal Japan.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0143037595, Paperback)

The perfect books for the true book lover, Penguin's Great Ideas series features twelve more groundbreaking works by some of history's most prodigious thinkers. Each volume is beautifully packaged with a unique type-driven design that highlights the bookmaker's art. Offering great literature in great packages at great prices, this series is ideal for those readers who want to explore and savor the Great Ideas that have shaped our world

With its wry portrayal of a shallow, materialistic 'leisure class' obsessed by clothes, cars, consumer goods and climbing the social ladder, this withering satire on modern capitalism is as pertinent today as it was when it was written over a century ago.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:50 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

The perfect books for the true book lover, Penguin's Great Ideas series features twelve more groundbreaking works by some of history's most prodigious thinkers. Each volume is beautifully packaged with a unique type-driven design that highlights the bookmaker's art. Offering great literature in great packages at great prices, this series is ideal for those readers who want to explore and savor the Great Ideas that have shaped our world With its wry portrayal of a shallow, materialistic 'leisure class' obsessed by clothes, cars, consumer goods and climbing the social ladder, this withering satire on modern capitalism is as pertinent today as it was when it was written over a century ago.… (more)

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