Technoculture and its Lived Consequences : A Terminal Marketing Approach

Hoang Ngoc, Quynh and Cronin, James and Skandalis, Alex (2023) Technoculture and its Lived Consequences : A Terminal Marketing Approach. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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This thesis is situated within an ultra-realist vein of marketing scholarship – what has recently been called “Terminal Marketing” or “de-romanticist consumer research” – that seeks to countervail utopian assumptions of an all-empowered consumer subject. Focusing on the intersection of technology with consumer culture (i.e., “technoculture”) as an empirical context, this thesis introduces novel conceptualisations of consumer subjectivity, its disempowerment and depoliticisation. Combining the cultural theories of Mark Fisher, Slavoj Žižek, and Steve Redhead with empirical fieldwork involving a 12-month netnography and 21 in-depth interviews with those who seek to unplug themselves from technoculture (i.e., “digital detoxers”), the entrapment and foreclosure that frames technoculture and its subjectivities is conceptualised. Emergent findings are organised into three research chapters (one theoretical and two empirical manuscripts). Altogether, these chapters map out a dystopian, “terminal” stage of consumer capitalism populated by increasingly disenchanted and knowingly helpless subjects whose pro- and anti-market behaviours are barely distinguishable in terms of genuine autonomy or transformative power. In tracing the various contours of consumers’ inertia and bleak dissatisfactions with their everyday digital lives, the findings reveal an increasingly unbearable onto-affective atmosphere of inescapability that cannot be discharged in any meaningful way. In the absence of collective hope for genuine alternatives to the existing system, consumers are resigned to accept the perceived unchangeability of the structural conditions that perpetuate their attachment to market-mediated fantasies and market-located solutions. The thesis explores the consequences of living within what Terminal Marketing scholarship classifies as a state of “cancelled futures” under capitalism.

Item Type:
Thesis (PhD)
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Research Output Funding/no_not_funded
?? technologyconsumer culture theoryno - not fundednobusiness, management and accounting(all)discipline-based researchlums keywordssdg 12 - responsible consumption and productionsdg 3 - good health and well-beingsdg 10 - reduced inequalities ??
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Deposited On:
08 Feb 2023 12:50
Last Modified:
07 Jun 2024 23:35