Luxury consumption and luxury brands

Past, present, and future

Authored by: Annamma Joy , Russell Belk , Rishi Bhardwaj

Routledge Handbook on Consumption

Print publication date:  February  2017
Online publication date:  February  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138939387
eBook ISBN: 9781315675015
Adobe ISBN: 9781317380900


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Luxury – its meaning, accessibility, and desirability – continually evolves, with one seemingly entrenched trend subtly and incrementally (or not so subtly and quite dramatically) replaced by another. Yet through the eras, some venerable luxury brands have retained their allure, even as they incorporate prevailing trends. An Hermès handbag, for example, is as indicative of luxury today as when it was first introduced at the turn of the twentieth century. In this paper, we limn the evolution of luxury and of luxury brands over time: how such brands are perceived, what market segments they target, and what the implications of current research reveal about brands’ impacts on social constructs. Additionally, we discuss specific areas of luxury marketing and consumption deserving of further research. How do conceptions of luxury in the past inform the experience of luxury in the present? How will luxury goods be perceived and consumed in the future?

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