An Analysis of Consumer Culture Reflected in Sister Carrie毕业论文_英语毕业论文

An Analysis of Consumer Culture Reflected in Sister Carrie毕业论文

2021-04-07更新

摘 要

嘉莉妹妹是西奥多.德莱塞的第一部小说,它反映了19世纪末美国社会的现状。作者的写作建立在其记者生涯和美国城市生活经历的基础上。在书中,德莱塞描绘了一系列深受资本主义消费价值观影响的人物。消费文化导致了冷漠的人际关系,削弱了传统美德的影响。本文分析了书中各种消费文化现象,从各个不同角度探讨了美国社会和消费主义的联系,并试图解觉现代社会扭曲消费观产生的问题。

关键词:《嘉莉妹妹》 ;消费文化;物质主义;人际关系

Contents

  1. Introduction………………………………………………………………………………………………..1
  2. Demonstration…………………………………………………………………………………………….3

2.1 Consumer Culture Demonstrated in Sister Carrie…………………………………………..3

2.1.1 Consumer Culture from the Perspective of Sociology…………………………………..3

2.1.2 Consumer Culture from the Perspective of Economics…………………………………4

2.1.3 Consumer Culture from the Perspective of History………………………………………4

2.1.4 Consuming Characteristics of the main characters in Sister Carrie………………..5

2.2 Solutions to the Issues concerning Consumer Culture…………………………………….6

2.2.1 Educational Solutions………………………………………………………………………………7

2.2.2 Moral Solutions ……………………………………………………………………………………..7

  1. Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………………………8

Works Cited……………………………………………………………………………………………………9

Bibliography………………………………………………………………………………………………….10

An Analysis of Consumer Culture Reflected in Sister Carrie

  1. Introduction

The author of Sister Carrie, Theodore Dreiser, was born in a poor family in Indiana. After spending his childhood suffering from poverty, Dreiser went to Chicago independently when he was fifteen years old. The year 1889 witnessed him entering the campus of University of Indiana as an undergraduate student. In 1892, he started his journalist career. Special experiences provided him sufficient chances to observe underprivileged people’s life. Sister Carrie served as Dreiser’s representative work and also his first novel, in which he created an unsatisfied young woman who always pursued vanity. From the book, readers can touch the deep mind of Dreiser. He had been struggling for making a living by himself before writing novels. Dreiser’s understanding and illustration of consumer culture maybe more convincing, Because Dreiser’s sister shared the same experience with Carrie. His sister Emma was seduced by a cashier of a hotel and escaped from home with him to New York. Dreiser himself worked in Chicago for several years and he knew this city well. He combined his sister’s story and his experience in Chicago, and wrote the novel Sister Carrie.

American society had gone through tremendous changes when the book was written in 1900. At the turn of 19th century and 20th century, capitalism gained rapid development and entered a booming period. The American country changed from an agriculture-centered state into a city-focused society. As the improvement of the mechanical production, surplus countryside labor flooded into urban area, leading to people’s desire for free and abundant living style. Thus, city became the living center and the destination for young people to pursue their dreams. The major role of Sister Carrie was one of those young people. The story was created under the circumstance of the economic development and industrialization of American capitalism. During that period, plentiful supply of material stimulated people’s motivation of consumption, further improving their worship for money. Gradually, awareness of consumption took the place of the concept of production and shaped the consumer culture in American society. This kind of culture placed more emphasis on material, weakening the influence of the traditional virtues such as thrift, modesty, self-discipline, kindness and so on. Thus it leads the benign social circle to a degrading one.

Sister Carrie tells a story of a girl from the American countryside. Carrie comes to Chicago for pursuing her dream of becoming an upper class person. In the first few months, she lives in her sister’s home which makes her disappointed.

The walls of the rooms were discordantly papered. The floors were covered with matting and the hall laid with a thin rag carpet. One could see that the furniture was of that poor, hurriedly patched together quality sold by the installment houses.( Dreiser 1982, 11)

The above lines of words describe Carrie’s disappointment by her sister’s family, including her timid sister and indifferent brother-in-law. When Carrie hopes to escape from her current situation, Drouet appears suddenly and provides Carrie with financial support.

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