Consumption and Place

Authored by: Steven Miles

The Routledge Companion to the Cultural Industries

Print publication date:  June  2015
Online publication date:  May  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415706209
eBook ISBN: 9781315725437
Adobe ISBN: 9781317533986


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Debates over the creative city have come to play a dominant role in the discourse that has surrounded the cultural industries over the past twenty years. The notion of the creative city is, however, underpinned by an often unarticulated and/or assumed relationship: that between consumption and place. This chapter will consider the proposition that the creative city is effectively a proxy for the consumer city. The cultural industries play a key role in tying the economy to a particular neo-liberal vision of that economy. This represents another stage in the “culturalisation” of the economy, something that is part of a long history, not least within the context of classical political economy (Hudson, 2005). However, the current relationship between consumption and place is perhaps most remarkable for how it ties cultural industries to a symbolic vision of the urban. In this context it is suggested that consumption represents the economic means by which culture has come to play a key role in the regeneration of the de-industrialised city.

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