Ritzer, G. (1999), ‘Reenchantment: creating spectacle through extravaganzas and simulations’ in Enchanting a Disenchanted World: Revolutionising the means of consumption, California: Pine Forge Press, 104-130.
in order for consumers to continue to be attracted to a particular thing it must be re-enchanted. Updated, renewed or something done in order for it to remain attractive and keep it’s large number of consumers coming back.
In Debord’s work The Society of the spectacle, he argues that one of the functions of the spectacle is to obscure and conceal “the rationality of the system.” Debord also suggests that spectacle is used to cover up the disenchantment of objects and also to cover up dissatisfaction. Re-enchantment is also achieved using extravaganzas. By putting on an elaborate shows such as those at the hotels and casinos in Las Vegas, we as the consumer become enchanted by the extravagant and elaborate setting so much so that we become satisfied with what we are consuming.
“The spectacular new means of consumption are, in turn, forcing other attractions to become more of an extravaganza.” (Ritzer, 1999)
Simulation is an integral part of re-enchantment it allows us to see something which appears to be real which is in fact not. Simulation begins to erode the distinction between reality and the imaginary. The people who work in these simulated places such as Disney land (which is a prime example of the imaginary being brought into our reality) are them themselves simulated. The people who dress up as Disney characters are simulated people. Even those who do not dress up but are still part of what we are consuming are simulated in terms of they are told how to dress, speak and behave.
This consumption of simulation is also leading into simulated communities. Moving away from tourism and into the realm of communities we can see that these too are becoming simulated. For example gated communities, the people who live there may have imported trees, have their gardens made up a certain way, expensive car in the drive way, but this too is a simulation of how they want to be perceived as a community.
“The chapter has documented the fact that the new means of consumption have become ever more spectacular by increasing the number and size of the extravaganzas and simulations (and even simulations of simulations) they offer. Such spectacles serve to: enchant the cathedrals of consumption so that they will be a continuing attraction to increasingly jaded consumers.” (Ritzer, 1999).