Valuing Rubbish Essay example

1433 WordsOct 2, 20126 Pages
'Rubbish has no value.' Identify the arguments for and against this view. Essay Plan. Process words- Identify the arguments. (outline the arguments) Content words- Rubbish, Value. Rubbish is the 'invisible part of consumption' (Brown, 2009, p103). The definition of rubbish via the dictionary is something that is 'worthless, unwanted material that is rejected or thrown out;' (, July 2012). It is something that no one wants and 'ought to be out of the way and out of sight.' (Brown, 2009, p103). This is a normative view of rubbish, determining 'right principles for action and guiding people’s decisions on what they ought to do' (Brown, 2009, p105). From this definition, we could describe rubbish as something that has…show more content…
New household appliances that save time, and packaging of foods, makes shopping and cooking quicker and easier. Advances in technology are also affected by labour saving concepts, in that it ends up cheaper to buy a new model of an existing product, then it is to get the old one repaired. Consumption, affluence, and fashion developments feeds the concept of conspicuous consumption, with new designs and symbolic 'high status luxury items' (Hetherington, 2009, p32) in the form of new appliances and technologies, being desirable to the seduced (Bauman, cited in Hetherington, 2009, p25) and more economical then getting the old repaired. Conspicuous consumption leads to the devaluing of rubbish through replacing old with new, but it also ties in nicely with Thompson's 'rubbish theory'. Antiques and collectables are viewed with higher status as they move from 'transient' to 'durables' and their value increases. Thompson explains how rubbish is a transforming process, and is in itself a changing concept. He explains that sociologically, rubbish can be revalued, with reference to 'aesthetic revaluation' (Brown, 2009, p130) and 'eccentric' revaluations' (Brown, 2009, p126). Thompson's notion of zero-value is elastic, but explains how valuing rubbish changes over time, and how something with no value now, could potentially have greater

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