Sunday, April 29, 2012

lovely, cont'd.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Design Sponge and the growing tendency in our culture to use stuff to create our identities.  If you resonated with that post, you'll probably like these thoughts by Sarah Bessey, because she says it better (her source of inspiration was Pinterest--a close cousin to the carefully cultivated homes on Design Sponge, methinks):

We see what we purchase or desire as an extension of our identity. So we still want to buy and consume, we want to be unique so we copy someone else's ideas, we still want to surround ourselves with our stuff. We want people to know who we are by what we wear, think, cook, espouse, read, or craft. (And now, add "pinning all the things" to that list.)
Pinterest is the fantasy league of consumerism and it speaks to the larger issues that we battle as a society: I am my image, I am what I consume, I am what I purchase, I am what I desire. How will anyone know I'm cool and quirky and fun and unique if I don't have the stuff that proves it? We become avatars of our true self, unable to be without the proper accoutrements to display it. 
We mistake our Stuff for our Self.  And then when we pin it or we do it or, even better, if someone else pins it or likes it or comments on it, we feel reinforced in our yearned-for identity.

I have no brilliant conclusions here; only a hope that by recognizing this tendency in my own life, I might be able, in small ways, to begin to break free.

Does anyone else empathize?

1 comment:

  1. Even though I don't do Pinterest or Design Sponge, the concept of us human beings attempting to establish and display our identities via possessions or style or taste is a concept that rings true to me. I think it manifests itself differently for different people, but I suppose it is fairly universal. Or universal for Americans at the very least.

    Just my two cents.