Journal of Social Sciences

Young Adult Perception and Attitude Toward Conspicuous Consumption and Poverty

Toni Yvette Sims-Muhammad

DOI : 10.3844/jssp.2012.512.518

Journal of Social Sciences

Volume 8, Issue 4

Pages 512-518


This study explores the perception and attitude of young adults toward conspicuous consumption portrayed in mass media and their conception of poverty. Many young adults may not realize the cadre of consumerist ideologies portrayed throughout the culture and mass media such as buy more, buy newer and improved, buy wants over needs, buy comparatively, buy exclusively and buy to prove. In light of such mass media portrayal, young adult consumption habits may reflect unrealistic ideas about what it means to be poor. This research quantitatively examined the impact of mass media on young adult consumption patterns and sought to determine if there is a relationship between conspicuous consumption and poverty perception based on portrayals in popular mass media culture. The population for this research was primarily college-age student consumers under 25. The findings indicate that young adults view their consumption as an indicator of class and social status and that mass media portrayal have a significant relationship on their consumption perception.


© 2012 Toni Yvette Sims-Muhammad. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.