Crawford, M. (1992), ‘The World in a Shopping Mall’ in Sorkin, M. ed., Variations on a Theme Park: the new American city and the end of public space, New York: Hill and Wang.
The utopia of consumption: Consumption has penetrated every corner of our lives, culture, leisure, politics and even death are being turned into commodities and therefore causing consumption to construct the way we see our world. As shopping malls continuously restructure and intrigue consumers they penetrate deeper into our world. However, “rigid and financial and merchandising formulas that guarantee and maximise its profits restrict the range and variety of goods it can offer” (Crawford, 1992). We find ourselves justifying consumption by the amount of money it costs.
Shopping malls extend the period of ‘just looking’ and this allows the customer to familiarise them self with the item, they mental try it on and consider their status with the item, this teaches the shopper about what they don’t have and in tern then what they want and what they ‘need’.
Retail Magic: Malls achieve success through indirect com-modification, by placing what may seem to be standard items in a new and interesting setting this encourages the consumer to see them as mysterious and desirable and in turn promotes and encourage more shopping.
Hyper consumption: After 1970 the system of regional malls continued to flourish however, it was clear that now the ‘generic-forumla’ mix was no longer guaranteed profits. Instead a new wave of malls fragmented into as many different fragments as the markets do. This allowed a great number of commodities to be merchandised than ever before. These new smaller malls allow more efficient shopping.
“If commodities no longer dominate this is because the product no longer carries the same importance” (Crawford, 1992). This is because almost everything is becoming commodified.