Sustainability in Practice: Exploring the Objective and Subjective Aspects of Personhood
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This study considers how sustainable consumption practices are brought into relationship with other things, people, and ideas that inhabit the social space of consumers. The analysis of 10 existential phenomenological interviews reveals that self-confessed green consumers acknowledge a similar understanding of environmental degradation but experience sustainable consumption differently. For some, the practice requires hardship and is experienced as a daily struggle. For others, sustainable consumption naturally occurs as part of their social life. The concept of personhood helps understand the informants' contrasted roles, rules, and symbolics of sustainable consumption. The findings highlight that sustainable consumption is integral to the same social and cultural system that enables people to relate to one another and that promoting categories of green consumers and criteria for their sustainable identity may contradict with a range of activities that are regarded as normatively important to our current consumer culture and central to our personhood.
Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing
© 2012 Taylor & Francis. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal website for access to the definitive, published version.
Marketing not elsewhere classified