Seeking the pleasure zone: Understanding young adult’s intoxication culture
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While drinking in moderation is preferred, the reality is that many young people are deliberately engaging in hedonistic drinking where the 'buzz' effect of alcohol has become an important commodity within the contemporary leisure culture. Drawing on qualitative research, this paper analyses young adult's narratives surrounding 'excessive drinking' to elucidate the importance of alcohol as an essential 'pleasure' commodity within the experience economy. Findings demonstrate alcohol is largely conceptualised as a pleasure state, with pleasure valued as either a state of 'happiness' or as a state 'annihilation'. Seeking alcohol-induced pleasure operates within temporal, spacial and social consumption limits and occurs within a framework of rational cost-benefit analysis. Greater understanding of the impact of pleasure on young adult's alcohol consumption experiences opens up the possibility for creating relevant, realistic, targeted harm reduction policy and practice. To produce an effective policy mix promoting sensible drinking among young people, harm reduction models need to consider the cultural entrenchment of young adult's alcohol consumption and the way they manage their alcohol experiences.
Australasian Marketing Journal
© 2010 Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy. Published by Elsevier. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. For information about this journal please refer to the publisher’s website or contact the author.
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