Consuming Stuff to Produce the Self

March 21, 6:30-8:30pm; buffet opens at 6:15pm.

Rose Library, 3rd Floor Flex Space

A lively discussion regarding the origins of consumer culture (food and goods) as symbolic of social status and self identity as well as contemporary implications for health and well-being.


Meg Mulrooney Associate Dean, University Studies and Associate Professor of History

Stephanie Baller, Assistant Professor of Health Sciences

Speaker Bios:

Stephanie Baller joined JMU in the Fall of 2010. Her research interests include the impacts of consumer culture and materialism on health and physical activity.

Meg Mulrooney became interested in Americans’ fascination with goods during grad school, when she specialized in material culture and 19th century social history. Immigrant consumption patterns were central to her first book, Black Powder, White Lace: The du Pont Irish and Cultural Identity in 19thC America (2001). She continues to explore consumerism in her American Studies classes and in her current research project, a study of race relations in Wilmington, NC.


The Marketplace of Revolution: How Consumer Politics Shaped American Independence by T. H. Breen

Review by: Jane T. Merritt
The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography , Vol. 129, No. 2 (Apr., 2005), pp. 231-232
Article Stable URL:
The Consumer Revolution: Now, Only Yesterday, Or a Long Time Ago?

Of Consuming Interests: The Style of Life in the Eighteenth Century by Cary Carson; Ronald Hoffman; Peter J. Albert
Review by: Paul G. E. Clemens
Reviews in American History , Vol. 23, No. 4 (Dec., 1995), pp. 574-581
Article Stable URL:
Being Seen at All the Best Restaurants: Food and Body in Consumer Culture

Clare Wyllie
Agenda , No. 51, Food: Needs, Wants and Desires (2002), pp. 63-69
Published by: Agenda Feminist Media
Article Stable URL:
Consumer Culture Theory (CCT): Twenty Years of Research

Eric J. Arnould and Craig J. Thompson
Journal of Consumer Research , Vol. 31, No. 4 (March 2005), pp. 868-882
Article DOI: 10.1086/426626
Article Stable URL: