This paper aims to discuss the concept of fetishism as an important but understudied kind of magical relationship to objects. Fetishism in the context of contemporary…
This paper aims to discuss the concept of fetishism as an important but understudied kind of magical relationship to objects. Fetishism in the context of contemporary consumption is conceptualized as a multilayered construct underlining the attribution of an aura and magical power to a product to achieve personal goals.
In total, 15 in-depth interviews were conducted to highlight contextual factors influencing the emergence of fetishism in contemporary consumption, to underline the instrumental and aspirational dimensions of fetishism and to provide a definition of contemporary product fetishism.
The results show that fetishism appears as fragmented and unstable magical beliefs toward products related to a need to cope with uncertain and important aspirational situations.
The paper provides a multidisciplinary approach of fetishism to provide insights regarding this phenomenon and its manifestations in the context of contemporary consumption.