Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Us--and How to Fight Back

Affluenza: How Over-Consumption Is Killing Us - and How to Fight Back
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Previous editions of Affluenza described the early symptoms of the disease that led to a nearly fatal shutdown of all our financial systems in This new edition puts more focus on the behavior changes we need to make to be certain that the Great Recession does not become a prelude to something worse.

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John de Graaf is an independent documentary producer who is the recipient of more than awards for filmmaking, including three Emmy awards. He is currently active in the Happiness Initiative www.

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David Wann is the author of ten books on sustainable lifestyles and designs and the producer of twenty-five documentaries, several of them award winners. He codesigned the cohousing neighborhood he lives in and coordinates the community garden. Thomas H. Naylor is a professor emeritus of economics at Duke University and is the author of over thirty books.


Consumer Behaviour in Action. Library Journal Now here is a good reason to go shopping! Show related SlideShares at end. New other. Nanaville by Anna Quindlen. We tried to warn you! Kurt Andersen.

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Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory n. One woman said she was "really excited about the mall because this is something we haven't had in this part of Washington.

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Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Us--and How to Fight Back [John De Graaf, David Wann, Thomas Naylor] on *FREE* shipping on. Editorial Reviews. Review. “Affluenza has easily passed the test of time and become an Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Us--and How to Fight Back Kindle Edition. by John de Graaf (Author).

We were waiting for something like this. Another explained that its hardwood floors "add a little sense of excitement to the mall. They're much easier than walking on tile or granite and make the Super Mall really special. Shoppers were eager to answer his questions about where they came from and what they thought of the mall. None of the people Simon talked to were sweating profusely. But all seemed infected by feverish expectations, often the first symptom of affluenza. Two women from Dallas, Texas, said they'd been at the mall for three days straight, while their husbands golfed nearby.

You've got to know the brands, and we have experience, we're proud to say," they proclaimed. I just went to shop," said a man with a cart full of merchandise.

Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Us--and How to Fight Back

Yes, you do, and that's the idea. Seeing so much leads to impulse buying, the key to mall profitability and to the success of big-box stores like Wal-Mart. Impulse: a devilish little snake that cajoles first, then bites later, when the credit card bill comes due. Only a quarter of mall shoppers come with a specific product in mind. The rest come just to shop. She's not alone.

Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Us-And How We Can Fight Back (Large Print 16pt)

One poll found that 93 percent of teenage American girls rate shopping as their favorite activity. An older couple passed by with a shopping cart piled to the brim. With 4.

Affluenza: How Overconsumption Is Killing Usand How to Fight Back

It employs twelve thousand people and attracts forty million visitors a year. The Mall of America is more than metaphorically a cathedral; some people get married there. It is also a world-class affluenza hot zone. Today, the malls of America have rivals in other countries. The Phoenix City Market Mall in Mumbai, India, is only slightly smaller than the Mall of America, and the New South China Mall is nearly twice as big, while the Dubai Mall has become the world's most visited leisure and shopping destination, with sixty-five million annual visitors.

But the malling of the world may be starting to lose steam. The big Indian and Chinese malls are full of vacant space, as many of India's and China's poor, unable to afford the products, come only to look, not to buy. In an even more promising development, recent demonstrations in Turkey began when the government announced plans to demolish Istanbul's popular Taksim Gezi Park and build a shopping mall in its place, striking a powerful blow against affluenza.

In the United States, too, many malls are losing tenants. Retail experts predict that a tenth of the approximately one thousand megamalls in the US will close their doors within the decade. Part of this downturn was the result of the recent recession. But much of it can be blamed on greater consumer spending options. While many malls, and vast discount megastores like Wal-Mart and Costco, still boast growing sales and still drive smaller, locally owned stores out of business , Americans are now doing a whole lot of shopping right from their couches.

Nearly twenty billion mail-order catalogs more than fifty million trees' worth of paper flood our homes each year, about seventy for every one of us, selling everything from soup to nuts to refrigerators to underwear. While some resent their arrival, most Americans eagerly await them and order from them with abandon. In some cases, we even pay for the catalogs such as Sears's so that we can pay for what's in them. Then there are the home shopping channels. Critics mock them as presenting a continual succession of baubles on bimbos, but for a sizable minority of Americans, they're the highlight of the cable TV systems, and highly profitable.

And to think someone once called TV "a vast wasteland. Mail-order catalogs and shopping channels carry a lot more than products. They are highly contagious carriers of affluenza. In the past several years, a new affluenza carrier has entered the mix in a big way.

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In time, it threatens to someday outdraw malls, catalogs, and shopping channels combined. The intense frenzy with which the ubiquitous Internet has been embraced as a shopping center can be compared only to that which followed the discovery of gold in California and Alaska, or to the Texas oil boom. Americans now spend an average of thirteen hours a week online, and much of that time is spent shopping, since a majority of Internet sites are selling something. Take a walk down memory lane. Way down. If you're as old as the authors, your memories carry you back to the s at least.

Suburban houses were going up everywhere. New cars were rolling from the assembly lines and onto new pavement. Ground breaking began for the National Defense Interstate Highway System, soon to stretch from sea to shining sea.

A TV dinner introduced in came from every oven. And even for middle-class America, it wasn't worry-free. On the same day in October 4 that Leave It to Beaver premiered on American television, those pesky Russians shot Sputnik into space. Nikita Khrushchev promised to bury us "in the peaceful field of economic competition. But was important for another, less heralded reason. It was the year the percentage of Americans describing themselves as "very happy" reached a plateau never exceeded and seldom matched since then.

The following year, a year when Americans bought two hundred million Hula-Hoops, the economist John Kenneth Galbraith published an influential book calling the United States "the affluent society. We felt richer then than we do now. Most Americans today don't think of themselves as affluent, says the psychologist Paul Wachtel, "even though in terms of gross national product we have more than twice as much as we did then.

Everybody's house has twice as much stuff in it.