The choosing consumer has been a prominent figure within consumption research, alternatively celebrated as enabling the expression of lifestyles and tastes or criticised for overlooking consumers as embedded in interconnected mundane practices. While sociologically oriented consumption research has explored the multiplicity of consumer roles beyond ‘chooser’, the figure of the choosing consumer persists in many research streams and in our shared cultural imagination. This article joins previous research on the ethics of consumption that has explored tensions between choosing and relational consumers. It does so by introducing the logic of choice and the logic of care to consumption research. Developed by Annemarie , these logics can be seen as ideal types representing contrasting styles of navigating decision-making, ethics, and questions of the good life. The logic of care emphasises attentive doings that aim to improve conditions in specific situations, seeking moderation rather than control, whereas the logic of choice starts out from sovereign individuals making clear-cut decisions. Using examples from a research project on everyday meat consumption practices, we develop a conceptualisation of the central dimensions of these logics within food consumption. The logics of choice and care enact particular worlds and ways of being in them, bringing forth the ontological politics of consumption. Consequently, we advocate for cultivating care in the world of consumption currently dominated by choice, since it enacts a more merciful framing of ethical consumption, emphasising our shared responsibility for ‘as well as possible’ relations without tipping over into guilt.
Building on interviews with 31 Swedish mothers and drawing on the concepts of emotion work, feeling rules, and cultural, economic and social capital, the article examines the emotion management mothers of neurodivergent and school-absent children carry out as they navigate school and care systems to improve their children’s situation. Three main findings are presented: (1) the mothers were left with a burdensome individual responsibility to obtain support for their children in the education and care sectors, and while doing so, they were expected to follow feeling rules emphasising reason, calmness and a constructive attitude; (2) the emotion work the mothers carried out in relation to the feeling rules was underscored by mother blame; and (3) the mothers’ emotion work was marked by their cultural, economic and social capital, though not always in a straightforward way.
The article contributes to research on mother blame by illuminating the underexplored issue of emotion work among mothers experiencing mother blame. The results also add to previous research on mother blame and social class by demonstrating when and how mothers’ cultural, economic and social capital helps them fend off mother blame and when such resources play a more ambiguous role.
In contemporary society, it is widely acknowledged that current patterns of consumption are fundamentally unsustainable because a large percentage of emissions comes from consumption related to food, mobility and housing practices. However, current debates and existing research on the need to change daily practices to address climate change tend to focus on single consumption activities, thereby paying too little attention to how practices are embedded in daily routines connected to a multitude of other practices. Instead of considering consumption activities related to food, mobility and housing as separate from one another, we examined how they connect and overlap with each other in the everyday lives of young Danes and what implications this might have for the ability to transition to less resource-intensive consumption. We do so through an analysis of data from interviews, mobilities mapping and photo diaries with 20 households, for a total of 30 young Danes (age 25–35) who are in the process of moving to new housing. With an outset in theories of practice, the article shows how the relations between the householders’ routines concerning food, mobility and housing become interwoven and embedded in bundles and complexes of practices characterised by conveniencisation. We argue that the conveniencisation in the case of bundles and complexes among food, mobility and housing practices create pathways towards more resource-intensive consumption as an implication due to the ‘stickiness’ of co-dependence in complexes and even looser interdependence in the bundling of food, mobility and housing practices in everyday lives.
This article explores the ways residents of Finnish small-scale communes navigate boundaries between personal separateness and the group’s togetherness within a domestic space. Studies on communal living have shed light on the ambivalence in communal relations, where people choose to live together but simultaneously remain independent from one another. However, the ways space affects their navigations of this ambivalence have not yet been analysed in detail. Based on 31 semi-structured interviews with residents of Finnish small-scale communes, floor plans drawn by interviewees of their homes and two ethnographic fieldwork periods, I argue that navigations of the residents’ separateness and unity are deeply intertwined with spatial processes and that the sensory and embodied spatial connections complicate the possibilities of distinguishing the individual from the group. Communal dwellers navigated their mutual boundaries through their daily use of the spaces, which centred embodied acts, spatial orientations and sensory experiences.
The South African Children’s Act, 2005 defines ‘care’ to include safeguarding all aspects of a child’s wellbeing. Despite this obligation falling equally on both parents, studies have shown that mothers in South Africa continue to take greater responsibility for childcare than fathers. Using the most recently available nationally representative quantitative data on physical and financial childcare, collected for the National Income Dynamics Study, this article presents a detailed overview of the involvement in childcare of men compared with women, and fathers compared with mothers. The article includes examining the gender and parental division in assistant childcare, investigating the role played by absent parents in regular physical and financial care, and analysing the gender division in household income of households in which children live.
Gambling is an addictive behaviour that causes significant harms to individuals, families and societies. Problematic gambling can have profound impacts on family life, including financial destitution and relationship breakdown. In addictive relationships, addictive behaviour dominates over other social commitments.
The COVID-19 pandemic had important implications on family life and gambling behaviours. This is likely to have affected family relationships in families experiencing gambling harms. The current study uses evidence from a qualitative survey (N=39) and interviews (N=5) collected with family members of gamblers to explore how family members of gamblers experienced addictive relationships during the COVID-19 pandemic in Finland.
The results show that gambling negatively affects intimate relationships, relationality and interdependencies in families. For many, gambling-related harms were accentuated by the intensification of addictive relationships during the pandemic. For others, availability restrictions of gambling brought relief. The results also show a need for more family-oriented help services and highlight the importance of prevention.
To site repositories for spent nuclear fuel and high-level waste, nuclear waste management (NWM) actors need public support. In the past, NWM actors have tried to build public support by conveying what they believe are the ‘objective facts’ of repository technologies, hence countering public prejudices and fears on the subject. Thus, while the public has been represented as emotional by implementers, implementers have portrayed themselves as guided by mere unemotional reason, facts and ‘truth’. Faced with continued public opposition, however, implementers have now adopted a different approach that explicitly addresses public emotions. In this article, we explore contemporary siting policy as a case of ‘discursive projection’ of public emotions – that is, not as a ‘true’ account of public emotions but rather as indicative of implementers’ understanding of public emotions, of that which is rational, and that which is not. In the analysis, we understand policy as an ‘emotion regime’ that establishes which feelings are compatible – and which are not – with the ‘truth’ of repositories for spent nuclear fuel. Understanding the relation between emotions and reason from an emotional-sociological perspective, we show how the emotion regime in policy has been transformed from being a clear-cut case of the conventional approach to an at-first-glance radical understanding of the relation between rationality and emotion. The analysis shows which emotions are described as a threat to reason and which are described as aiding implementers’ reason and rationality, hence which emotions are idealised – and which are rejected.