Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Social Opulence and Private RestraintThe Consumer in British Socialist Thought Since 1800$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Noel Thompson

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199646012

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199646012.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 September 2021

‘Punished by the Attainment of their Desires’

‘Punished by the Attainment of their Desires’

Social Democratic Conceptions of Consumption and the Consumer in Inter-war Britain

(p.74) (p.75) 3 ‘Punished by the Attainment of their Desires’
Social Opulence and Private Restraint

Noel Thompson

Oxford University Press

The chapter discusses the reaction of socialist writers to the growing importance of consumption in a period which, while traditionally regarded as one of depression, was characterized, for many, by a significant rise in living standards and an ever richer material culture. In this context the chapter identifies how certain critical themes were sustained in the literature but also the emergence of a more positive attitude to both the consumer and consumption in the work of a number of writers. More specifically it looks at the discussion by socialists of the actual and potential rationality of consumers, their sovereignty (or otherwise), their freedom and capacity to choose and the deleterious as well as the positive aspects of their choices. The chapter also considers what writers saw as some of the social and moral consequences of consumer freedom and the relationship of producers and consumers in a future socialist commonwealth.

Keywords:   socialism, consumer, consumption, sovereignty, rationality, choice, freedom

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .