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Product, Competence, Project and Practice DIY and the dynamics of craft consumption

Watson, Matthew and Shove, Elizabeth (2008) Product, Competence, Project and Practice DIY and the dynamics of craft consumption. Journal of Consumer Culture, 8 (1). pp. 69-89. ISSN 1741-2900

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Abstract

Studies of ordinary (as distinct from spectacular) forms of consumption have generated new questions and new ways of thinking about mechanisms and processes of change and about the conceptual status of consumer goods. No longer exclusively framed as semiotic resources deployed in the expression and reproduction of identities and social relations, products are increasingly viewed as essential ingredients in the effective accomplishment of everyday life. In this article, we examine the recursive relation between products, projects and practices with reference to do-it-yourself (DIY) and home improvement - an important area of craft consumption and a field in which consumers are actively and creatively engaged in integrating and transforming complex arrays of material goods. Interviews with DIY practitioners and retailers point to a circuit of interdependent relations between the hardware of consumption (tools, materials, etc.); distributions of competence (between humans and non-humans); the emergence of consumer projects and, with them, new patterns of demand. In elaborating on these practical and theoretical linkages we develop an analysis of the material dynamics of craft consumption that bridges approaches rooted in science studies, material culture and consumption.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Consumer Culture
Uncontrolled Keywords: home improvement ; materiality ; skill ; technology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Sociology
ID Code: 52979
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 14 Mar 2012 13:09
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 09 Apr 2014 23:12
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/52979

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