PhD Seminar in Consumption Theory


Consumption Theory: Canon of Classics, Odense, Denmark, 27 Aug - 1 Sep 2006; Deadline 15 May

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Date: Thu, 20 Apr 2006 15:07:01 +0200
From: Søren Askegaard <aske@SAM.SDU.DK>

University of Southern Denmark – Odense
Consumption Theory: Canon of Classics
Ph.D. Seminar
August 27-September 1 2006

Aim of the course: Consumption is beginning to take center stage as a subject of study in multiple disciplines, including sociology and anthropology among others.  Marketing and consumer research disciplines, along with economics, which had claimed consumption studies as their terrain, are both energized and challenged by this new interest in consumption.  The purpose of this course is to critically investigate some of the key classics that constitute the foundation for many of the current perspectives in consumption studies. This includes such classical sociologists as Karl Marx, Marcel Mauss, Georg Simmel, and Max Weber, but also more contemporary authors such as Jean Baudrillard, Zygmunt Bauman, and Daniel Miller and others will be covered.

Faculty: The faculty members for this seminar are Søren Askegaard, Dominique Bouchet and Dannie Kjeldgaard, all from University of Southern Denmark – Odense, Eric J. Arnould, University of Arizona, Robert V. Kozinets, York University, and Craig J. Thompson from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Location and dates: The seminar will take place at the campus of the University of Southern Denmark, whereas accommodation and dinners will be in downtown Odense. There will be bus transportation to and from campus on seminar days. The seminar will begin Sunday, August 27 in the morning and end the night of Friday, September 1, 2006.  Thus we expect the students to arrive Saturday evening August 25 at the latest and leave Saturday September 2nd at the earliest.

Other course information: The seminar will be held in English, and is 5 ECTS credits.  The number of students will be held at 25.  The tuition for the seminar, which includes accommodation and meals, is 1000 Euros.  Students from Nordic and Baltic countries can apply for tuition discount and for funds towards travel expenses. 

Seminar coordinator: Søren Askegaard, Professor of Marketing, Department of Marketing, University of Southern Denmark – Odense, Campusvej 55, DK-5230  Odense M, Denmark.  E-mail:  Tel: +45 65 50 32 55.  Fax: +45 66 15 51 29.

Seminar prerequisites: There are no particular prerequisites for Ph.D. students.  Selection will be made from among applicants on the basis of a letter of interest, which should address the student’s dissertation research interests and the fit of this seminar within their doctoral program or other research interests.  The letter of interest including research project presentation should be no longer than 1.000 words, and should be submitted to the seminar coordinator no later than May 15th 2006.

The students who are selected will be required to read the literature included in this program.  They will come to the seminar ready to make a brief presentation of their research project.  At the end of the seminar, they will make another presentation that will indicate how their research project will be modified based on the inspirations from the seminar.  An important and by experience very enriching part of the program, however, is a set of one-to-one interactive sessions with the faculty, where the student and one of the faculty members can meet for app. 30 minutes and address particular questions and issues concerning the doctoral student’s own work.

To acquire the credits for the seminar, the student must deliver satisfactory presentations and participate actively and constructively in the seminar discussions as well as in the one-to-one sessions with faculty members. The collective group of faculty will meet at the end of the seminar to assess each of the students’ performance.
University of Southern Denmark – Odense
Consumption Theory: Canon of Classics
Ph.D. Seminar
August 27-September 1 2006


Sunday, August 27 

10:30-11:00    Welcome – Søren Askegaard

11:00-13:00    "Why consumer researchers should read classical sociologists" – Dominique Bouchet

13:00-14:00    Lunch & Social Hour (Faculty and students meet and talk to each other)

14:00-19:00    Student project presentations
Students present their projects to faculty divided into two groups with 2-3 faculty in each group.  Each student has 15 minutes to present and 5 minutes of suggestions follow). Don’t worry, there’ll be a coffee break

20:00-        Dinner

 The time after dinner is for discussions, preparations, reading, socializing, etc.

Monday, August 28 

9:00-11:00    "Simmel, Mauss, etc.: The first consumer researchers?" – Dominique Bouchet

11:00-12:30    Student-faculty meetings
Students make appointments with faculty to discuss their projects and get individual feedback

12.30-14:00    Lunch

14:00-16:00    Anthropologists and anthropologies of Consumption 1 – Eric J. Arnould

16:00-16:30     Coffee

16:30-18:30    Anthropologies of consumption 2 – Eric J. Arnould

19:00-         Dinner

Tuesday, August 29

9:00-11:00    "Cultural Studies and Contemporary Consumer Research 1: Ideologies and Audiences" – Robert Kozinets

11:00-12:30    Student-faculty meetings
Students make appointments with faculty to discuss their projects and get individual feedback

12:30-14:00    Lunch

14:00-16:00    "Cultural Studies and Contemporary Consumer Research 2" – Robert Kozinets

16:00-18:00    Student-faculty meetings
Students make appointments with faculty to discuss their projects and get individual feedback

19:00-        Dinner

Wednesday, August 30 

9:00-11:00    "Michel Foucault: Bio-power and implications for the study of consumer culture" – Craig Thompson

11:00-12:30    Student-faculty meetings
Students make appointments with faculty to discuss their projects and get individual feedback

12:30-14:00    Lunch

14:00-16:00    "Foucault and friends – discussions about the Foucault legacy"  lead by Craig Thompson

16:00-16:30     Coffee

16:30-18:30    "Bauman: Consumers in an Age of Globalization" – Dannie Kjeldgaard

19:30-         Dinner

Thursday, August 31 

9:00-11:00    "Baudrillard: A System of Consumption?" – Søren Askegaard

11:00-12:30    Student-faculty meetings
Students make appointments with faculty to discuss their projects and get individual feedback

12:30-14:00    Lunch

14:00-16:00    "Baudrillard: Fatalisms, Seduction and Desire" – Søren Askegaard

16:00-16:30    Coffee

16:30-18:00    "Consumer Culture Theory: Where do We Go from Here?" – 5 faculty panel and students debate

19:00-20:30    Dinner

20:30-        Students prepare for their final presentations

Friday, September 1 

9:00-12:00    Students prepare for their final presentations

12:00-13:00    Lunch

13:00-18:00    Students present ideas about how they intend to include theoretical, topical and conceptual issues in their projects based on the readings and discussions of the seminar. Again, including coffee break.

18:00-19:00    Evaluations of the seminar

20:00-    Dinner and party!

Saturday, September 2 

Faculty and students leave accommodations


Eric J. Arnould became the PETSMART Distinguished Professor in the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Arizona in August 2005.  Before joining University of Arizona, Dr. Arnould was E. J. Faulkner College Professor of Agribusiness and Marketing at the University of Nebraska. He taught at UNL from1999 to 2005.  In 1997, he was Visiting Professor at Odense University in Denmark, and has also taught at EAP-ESCP, Paris, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, University of South Florida, California State University Long Beach, and the University of Colorado at Denver.  He holds a 1982 Ph.D. degree in social anthropology from the University of Arizona, where his doctoral research focused on the effects of the development of a regional marketing system on production strategies of households in the Niger Republic, West Africa.  He spent more than ten years working on problems of natural resource management and economic development in more than a dozen West African nations for governmental and non-governmental organizations.  Since 1990, he has been a full-time academic, teaching courses in consumer behavior, global marketing strategy, and research employing qualitative data.  His recent research investigates service relationships and betrayal, channels structure and market organization in West Africa, consumer loyalty, consumer behavior and the household, retail telephony, Fair Trade marketing strategies, magic in postmodernity, inheritance of cherished possessions, consumer culture theory, and issues associated with the conduct and representation of multi-method research, especially ethnography.  Dr. Arnould has written more than 40 articles and chapters that appear in the major US marketing journals, and other social science periodicals and books.  He is the co-author of an undergraduate textbook, Consumers, 2e. He started a third term as Associate Editor of the Journal of Consumer Research in July 2005 and serves on the editorial boards of other major journals including, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Retailing, Journal of Service Research, and Culture, Markets, and Consumption.  Dr. Arnould is an outdoor enthusiast, speaks French and Hausa, and enjoys being a parent and banging on his guitars.  His dogs Daisy and Rosie love to take him for runs in the desert.

Søren Askegaard was born in 1961. He is professor of marketing at University of Southern Denmark, Odense. He has a Masters Degree in Social Sciences from Odense University, a post-graduate Diploma in Communication Studies from the Sorbonne University, Paris and a Ph.D. in Business Studies from Odense University. His research interests are generally stuck in the field of consumer behaviour analysis from a cultural perspective, although he finds it difficult to concentrate very long on one particular topic. For some reason (or possibly without any), he has received three Danish research awards. His work only now and then appears in major journals such as Consumption, Markets and Culture, European Journal of Marketing, International Business Review, Journal of Consumer Research, and Psychology and Marketing, although he came off to a head-start in his international publishing career with his 1988 contribution to The Flag Bulletin.

Dominique Bouchet has lived in Denmark for 27 years. He was born in Paris in 1949 where he was educated in business economics (ESSEC), international economics (Sorbonne), sociology (Paris 7), town planning (ENPC) and Latin American Studies (IHEAL). He has been an associate professor in international economics and an associate professor in sociology and social psychology and is now Professor of International Marketing at the Department of Marketing & Management at University of Southern Denmark Odense where he is also the Director of Doctoral Programs in Social Sciences. He was also Professor at The Norwegian School of Management BI in Oslo. His main research interest is in social change and cultural differences. He studies the importance of the cultural dimension in international marketing and management. He teaches courses in cross-cultural marketing, cross-cultural communication, social psychology and cultural analysis in relation to marketing and management, marketing and social change, advertising, semiotics. He has given Ph.D. lectures and courses at The Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, at Arizona State University, at the University of California at Irvine, at Stockholm University, Paris Dauphine, Paris Sorbonne, ESADE in Barcelona and for EIASM and for EDAMBA (Two European Business Research Associations organizing international doctoral courses). He has organized several doctoral courses in Business Research, Qualitative Methods, and Semiotics. He has also taught in Belgium, Norway, Spain, China, Japan. Dominique Bouchet is the author or co-author of more than 25 books and 100 articles in ten languages. He is on the editorial board of several European and American journals. He is the Book Review Editor of Consumption, Markets & Culture. Frequently used in the media (more than fifty columns, hundreds of interviews), he is also a consultant to many European firms for top level management/marketing decisions, and an invited speaker by many companies and organizations.

Dannie Kjeldgaard is an Associate Professor at the Department of Marketing and Management at University of Southern Denmark, Odense. His research has been published in Journal of Consumer Research, Consumption Markets and Culture, European Journal of Cultural Studies, as book chapters in edited volumes and in a number of conference proceedings. He is a reviewer of Journal of International Business Studies and a member of the Editorial Review Board of Consumption, Markets and Culture. Specific research projects encompass global youth culture, glocal branding, and the marketization of body culture.

Robert V. Kozinets is an Associate Professor of Marketing at York University’s Schulich School of Business in Toronto, Canada. An anthropologist by training, he has ethnographically studied Star Trek, Star Wars, and X-Files fans, sports and automobile afficionadoes, coffee connoisseurs, online and offline videogamers, activists and culture jammers, toy and comic book collectors, technophiles, and hordes of bloggers and other online or virtual community members. His most-cited article was published in the London-based European Management Journal, and other works have been published in the Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Consumer Research, the Journal of Marketing Research, the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, Consumption, Markets, & Culture and the Journal of Retailing. He developed and continues to expand the technique of netnography or Internet ethnography, and has also been actively involved in developing videography as a marketing and consumer research methodology, co-chairing with Russ Belk all of the ACR Film Festivals thus far. He is currently editing a volume on Consumer Tribes along with Avi Shankar and Bernard Cova.
Craig J. Thompson is Churchill Professor of Marketing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee in 1991 with an official degree in marketing and a subversive interest in hermeneutical and poststructural research traditions. For well over a decade, he has been terrorizing journal editors, reviewers, and the occasional reader with hermeneutic harangues, desultory deconstructive diatribes, and Foucauldian-inspired confabulations regarding consumer identities, power and resistance dynamics in the marketplace, and the ideological shaping of gender. His oeuvre has been described as post-lucid and, much to his continuing surprise, his research appears in otherwise respectable journals including Consumption, Markets, & Culture, Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing Research, Sociological Quarterly, and Journal of Advertising. He is co-author of the book The Phenomenology of Everyday Life (with Howard Pollio and Tracy Henley). He has never won a major academic award but vows to keep trying because mistakes do happen. Finally, he is the only person on the planet who actually believes that the Matrix sequels are more interesting than the "original." Whoa….. 

Some potential examples to give you an idea –  a final readings list will be provided early May.

Bataille, Georges. 1991. The Accursed Share. An Essay on General Economy. Volume 1: Consumption. New York: Zone Books. Read pp. 1-142.

Bataille, Georges. 1985. "The notion of expenditure." Pp. 116-129 in Visions of Excess. Selected Writings, 1927-1939, edited by Georges Bataille. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota.

Baudrillard, Jean. 1998/1970. The Consumer Society, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Baudrillard, Jean. 1981/1972. For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, "The Ideological Genesis of Needs," pp. 63-87, St. Louis, MO: Telos Press (trans. by C. Levin).

Baudrillard, J. 1988/1983. Fatal strategies: Selected writings, "The Object and its Destiny," Oxford, Polity Press: 185-206 (trans. by M. Poster).

Foucault, Michel (1978), The History of Sexuality Vol. 1, New York: Vintage. Pages 1-102. 

Haraway, Donna (1994), "Teddy Bear Patriarchy: Taxidermy in the Garden of Eden, New York City, 1908-1936," in Culture/Power/History, eds. Nicholas B. Dirks, Geoff Eley, and Sherry B. Ortner, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 49-95.

Marx, Karl. 1976/1867. Capital: A Critique of Political Economy, Vol. 1, "Chapter 1: The Commodity," pp. 125-177, "Chapter 2: The Process of Exchange," pp. 178-187, and "Chapter 23: Simple Reproduction," pp. 711-724, New York: Penguin Books (trans. by B. Fowkes).

Mauss, Marcel. 1990(1924). The gift. The form and reason for exchange in archaic societies. New York: W. W. Norton.

Simmel, Georg.1997(1903). "The metropolis and mental life." Pp. 174-185 in Simmel on Culture. Selected writings, edited by D. Frisby and M. Featherstone. London: Sage.

Simmel, Georg. 1997(1905). "The philosophy of fashion." Pp. 187-205 in Simmel on Culture. Selected writings, edited by David Frisby and Mike Featherstone. London: Sage.

Thompson, Craig J. (2003), "Natural Health’s Narratives of Healing and the Ideological Production of Consumer Resistance," The Sociological Quarterly, 44 (Winter), 81-108.