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Reconceptualizing materialism as identity goal pursuits: Functions, processes, and consequences

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  • Shrum, L.J.
  • Wong, Nancy
  • Arif, Farrah
  • Chugani, Sunaina K.
  • Gunz, Alexander
  • Lowrey, Tina M.
  • Nairn, Agnes
  • Pandelaere, Mario
  • Ross, Spencer M.
  • Ruvio, Ayalla
  • Scott, Kristin
  • Sundie, Jill

Abstract

This article proposes an expanded conceptualization of materialism that grounds materialism in research on the self. The article stresses the functions of materialistic goal pursuit, the processes by which these functions are developed and implemented, and their potential consequences. This functional perspective views materialistic behavior as motivated goal pursuit intended to construct and maintain self-identity, and defines materialism as the extent to which people engage in identity maintenance and construction through symbolic consumption. The article discusses the utility of this conceptualization of materialism in relation to other conceptualizations and suggests avenues for future research.

Suggested Citation

  • Shrum, L.J. & Wong, Nancy & Arif, Farrah & Chugani, Sunaina K. & Gunz, Alexander & Lowrey, Tina M. & Nairn, Agnes & Pandelaere, Mario & Ross, Spencer M. & Ruvio, Ayalla & Scott, Kristin & Sundie, Jill, 2013. "Reconceptualizing materialism as identity goal pursuits: Functions, processes, and consequences," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(8), pages 1179-1185.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:66:y:2013:i:8:p:1179-1185
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2012.08.010
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Foster, John, 2018. "The Consumption Function: A New Perspective," MPRA Paper 84383, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Savita Hanspal & P. Raj Devasagayam, 2017. "Impact of Consumers’ Self-Image and Demographics on Preference for Healthy Labeled Foods," SAGE Open, , vol. 7(1), pages 21582440166, January.
    3. Kaufmann, Hans Ruediger & Petrovici, Dan Alex & Filho, Cid Gonçalves & Ayres, Adriano, 2016. "Identifying moderators of brand attachment for driving customer purchase intention of original vs counterfeits of luxury brands," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(12), pages 5735-5747.
    4. Dora E. Bock & Jacqueline K. Eastman & Kevin L. Eastman, 2018. "Encouraging Consumer Charitable Behavior: The Impact of Charitable Motivations, Gratitude, and Materialism," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 150(4), pages 1213-1228, July.
    5. Elodie Gentina & L. J. Shrum & Tina M. Lowrey, 2018. "Coping with Loneliness Through Materialism: Strategies Matter for Adolescent Development of Unethical Behaviors," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 152(1), pages 103-122, September.
    6. Gong Sun & Wangshuai Wang & Zhiming Cheng & Jie Li & Junhua Chen, 2017. "The Intermediate Linkage Between Materialism and Luxury Consumption: Evidence from the Emerging Market of China," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 132(1), pages 475-487, May.
    7. Ryoo, Yuhosua & Sung, Yongjun & Chechelnytska, Inna, 2020. "What makes materialistic consumers more ethical? Self-benefit vs. other-benefit appeals," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 173-183.
    8. Shino Takayama & Yuki Tamura & Terence Yeo, 2019. "Primaries, Strategic Voters and Heterogenous Valences," Discussion Papers Series 605, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
    9. Gentina, Elodie & Shrum, L.J. & Lowrey, Tina M., 2016. "Teen attitudes toward luxury fashion brands from a social identity perspective: A cross-cultural study of French and U.S. teenagers," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(12), pages 5785-5792.
    10. Jaspers, Esther, 2018. "Opening up on consumer materialism," Other publications TiSEM a21cb1c8-5af1-46cc-9ea0-a, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    11. Kniazeva, Maria & Babicheva, Eva, 2017. "(Un)saving face, or the designer face as a new consumer commodity," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 143-148.
    12. Elodie Gentina & L. J. Shrum & Tina M. Lowrey & Scott J. Vitell & Gregory M. Rose, 2018. "An Integrative Model of the Influence of Parental and Peer Support on Consumer Ethical Beliefs: The Mediating Role of Self-Esteem, Power, and Materialism," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 150(4), pages 1173-1186, July.
    13. Vilches-Montero, Sonia & Nik Hashim, Nik Mohd Hazrul & Pandit, Ameet & Bravo-Olavarria, Renzo, 2018. "Using the senses to evaluate aesthetic products at the point of sale: The moderating role of consumers’ goals," Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 82-90.
    14. Lingguo Xu & Peter E. Earl & D. S. Prasada Rao, 2019. "Materialism and Economic Progress," Discussion Papers Series 604, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
    15. Lim, Weng Marc & Phang, Cynthia Su Chen & Lim, Ai Ling, 2020. "The effects of possession- and social inclusion-defined materialism on consumer behavior toward economical versus luxury product categories, goods versus services product types, and individual versus ," Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Elsevier, vol. 56(C).
    16. Rimple Manchanda, 2019. "Materialism – A Conceptualization for Contemporary Research," Indian Journal of Commerce and Management Studies, Educational Research Multimedia & Publications,India, vol. 10(1), pages 48-54, January.
    17. Jean-Noël Kapferer & Anne Michaut-Denizeau, 2020. "Are millennials really more sensitive to sustainable luxury? A cross-generational international comparison of sustainability consciousness when buying luxury," Journal of Brand Management, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 27(1), pages 35-47, January.
    18. Bartikowski, Boris & Walsh, Gianfranco, 2015. "Attitude toward cultural diversity: A test of identity-related antecedents and purchasing consequences," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 526-533.
    19. Zheng, Xiaoying & Baskin, Ernest & Peng, Siqing, 2018. "Feeling inferior, showing off: The effect of nonmaterial social comparisons on conspicuous consumption," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 196-205.
    20. Davidson, Alexander & Habibi, Mohammad Reza & Laroche, Michel, 2018. "Materialism and the sharing economy: A cross-cultural study of American and Indian consumers," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 364-372.
    21. Ajitha, S. & Sivakumar, V.J., 2017. "Understanding the effect of personal and social value on attitude and usage behavior of luxury cosmetic brands," Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 103-113.
    22. Ouyang, Mingkun & Cai, Xiao & Yin, Yulong & Zeng, Pan & Chen, Ye & Wang, Xingchao & Xie, Xiaochun & Wang, Pengcheng, 2020. "Student-student relationship and adolescent problematic smartphone use: The mediating role of materialism and the moderating role of narcissism," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 110(C).
    23. Małgorzata E. Górnik-Durose, 2020. "Materialism and Well-Being Revisited: The Impact of Personality," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 21(1), pages 305-326, January.
    24. Sandra Awanis & Bodo B Schlegelmilch & Charles Chi Cui, 2017. "Asia’s materialists: Reconciling collectivism and materialism," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 48(8), pages 964-991, October.

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    Keywords

    Materialism; Goal pursuit; Self-identity; Well-being;

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