Discursive Confusion over Sustainable Consumption: A Discursive Perspective on the Perplexity of Marketplace Knowledge

Annu Markkula, Johanna Moisander
  • Journal of Consumer Policy, November 2011, Springer Science + Business Media
  • DOI: 10.1007/s10603-011-9184-3

Why fashion consumers struggle to decide what is an 'ethical' and 'sustainable' choice

What is it about?

In this paper, we study the nature and implications of the discursive polyphony that consumers face when striving for more sustainable consumption practices. We contribute to the literature on consumer policy studies by theoretically elaborating on a discursive perspective on the complexity and perplexity of sustainable development-related information.

Why is it important?

The study contributes to a better understanding of the ways in which consumers' ordinary, everyday microlevel discursive activity is implicated in complex political struggles where conflicting macrolevel institutionalized discourses of sustainable consumption are appropriated and contested. It also illustrates how, as a result of this discursive activity, particular outcomes with empowering and disempowering effects may arise.


Professor Johanna K. Moisander
Aalto University

This paper is based on Annu Markkula's PhD thesis for which I served as the PhD supervisor at Helsinki School of Economics. The paper continues my earlier work on the motivational complexity of green consumerism. Check out the Resources I have provided here.

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor Johanna K. Moisander