Globalisation and consumption of material and symbolic goods by black Africans Zulu-English speakers in DMA : clothing and its power of symbolisation within popular culture.
This dissertation is an attempt to shed light on the impact that global cultural consumption has had in the transformation of perceptions of material and symbolic consumption in everyday life among urban black African Zulu-English speakers that live in the Durban Metropolitan area. The process of transformation within this group has not occurred without resistance, confrontation and struggle against the hegemonic societal forces. Black Africans have suffered spatial segregation and social exclusion during the history of white colonisation and the apartheid system. Therefore, their socio-economic, cultural and ideological social world has been transformed through multi-cultural relationships, politico-ideological power, socio- economic unequal distribution of wealth and class differentiation. Many events have occurred since the 1980's, the most significant being the triumph of the democratic system on 1994 over apartheid power. This led to South Africa's opening the door to the global economy and to neo-liberal ideologies. These processes have had a powerful effect on the material and symbolic consumption of the social group under investigation and particularly in the area of clothing consumption. Mediations such as the media, western religions, European languages, etc. have been part of this very complex process, which affects and transforms the social practices of black African Zulu-English speakers. The influence of western mediation has transformed the habitus and taste consumption of ordinary black South Africans. Therefore, this study is concerned with the transformed thoughts and perception of the material and symbolic consumption within the popular culture of black Africans Zulu-English speakers who live in the Durban Metropolitan Area. Consumption is a very important concept in our understanding of how taste and habitus organise the social practices of black Africans in everyday live. In addition, consumption in general and clothing consumption in particular serves to define and re-confirm symbolic meanings within popular culture and symbolic distinction between classes. This study has used three different methods: ethnographic, archival historical and statistical.
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