What Is Conspicuous Consumption, Vicarious Leisure, And Conspicuous Leisure?


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Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
(1) Conspicuous Consumption - Term used to describe lavish spending on goods and services acquired mainly for the purpose of displaying income or wealth (Source: Wikipedia)
Example: If I were to purchase a golden cup, it would not be because I wanted/needed it, but so that I could essentially 'show-off' my wealth.

(2) Vicarious Leisure - Leisure engaged in by wives/servants as evidence of the wealth of the master. (Source: If my servants can spend their time doing leisurely activities as well as I, I must be well off.

(3) Conspicuous Leisure - Term denotes visible leisure for sake of displaying social status (Source: Wikipedia)
Example: If I were to use the golden cup from earlier, it is not because I had no other cups OR because I was thirsty, but simply for the fact that I wanted to show off my wealth (again).

~~In addition:
Vicarious Consumption - "When we see a butler in a tuxedo, a benefit accrues not to the butler but his "master." The butler is consuming vicariously for his boss." (Source:
E Jacobson Profile
E Jacobson answered
Conspicuous Consumption was a concept first proposed by an American philosopher, called Thorstein Veblen (1857-1929). It is now something which we rather take for granted, but in the early part of the twentieth century was a bit of a revelation.
He argued that as soon as any Society has overcome the 'primitive' stage, class distinctions will arise. People have all the basics, but more goods are produced, the luxuries and someone will buy them. People who are wealthier (for whatever reason) will have more leisure time and more time to buy these goods. They also have a basic need to be envied and respected, so they have to buy expensive items and display their wealth.
This will increase the divide between the haves and the have nots. He criticised this whole way of being, but as Society has evolved, conspicuous consumption seems to have become entrenched in our lives.

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